Heinrich: New Mexico To Receive $1 Million HHS Grant To Sign-Up Children For Health Coverage

"We must do all we can to improve the health and wellbeing of our state's children"

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Today, U.S. Senator Martin Heinrich (D-N.M.) announced that New Mexico will receive $1 million in new grant funding from Health and Human Services (HHS) for efforts to identify and enroll children eligible for Medicaid and the Children's Health Insurance Program (CHIP). The award is part of the Affordable Care Act and the Children's Health Insurance Program Reauthorization Act (CHIPRA) of 2009 for enrollment and renewal outreach.

"Improving access to health care for children in New Mexico will ensure they get the care they need and lay the foundation for a healthy life," said Sen. Heinrich. "We must do all we can to improve the health and wellbeing of our state's children, and one way to do that is by improving families' access to affordable health care."

In New Mexico, more than 47,000 children or 9 percent of all children in the state lack health insurance. The national average of children without health insurance is 7 percent. These numbers were released in the Annie E. Casey Foundation's 2013 KIDS COUNT Data Book, which ranked New Mexico 50th in the nation in overall child wellbeing.

According to HHS, efforts to streamline Medicaid and CHIP enrollment and renewal practices, combined with robust outreach activities, help reduce the number of uninsured children.

The Connecting Kids to Coverage Outreach and Enrollment Grants were awarded to 41 state agencies, community health centers, school-based organizations and non-profit groups in 22 states. Grant amounts range from $190,000 to $1 million. 

For more information about the grant, go to: http://www.hhs.gov/news/press/2013pres/07/20130702b.html