NMID article to look at health exchange debate

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Trip Jennings, NMID's executive director, will author the article examining the health exchange debate.

Trip Jennings, NMID's executive director, will author the article examining the health exchange debate.

New Mexico In Depth’s next article will publish on our website and in several newspapers this weekend.

The article, an in-depth look at the state’s struggles to create its own health exchange as federal deadlines near, is NMID’s first since its January six-part series examining Gov. Susana Martinez’s tenure. Written by Trip Jennings, NMID’s executive director, the story will build on the reporting Jennings did on the exchange as part of that series.

A cornerstone of the nation’s health care law, the exchange would be a one-stop shop for people hunting for health insurance. It could lower the uninsured rate in New Mexico, where one in five residents lacks coverage. But time is running out on creating a state-run exchange. New Mexico must be able to enroll residents in the virtual marketplace called a health exchange in a matter of months.

By this spring, states like New Mexico that want to set up their own exchanges must show progress to the federal government. If Washington feels there hasn’t been enough progress, it might step in to take over setting up an exchange, a scenario many state officials say they want to avoid. The details of how New Mexicans will receive health insurance are at stake.

The article will publish Saturday afternoon on New Mexico In Depth’s website. Several newspapers – the Las Cruces Sun-News, Santa Fe New Mexican, Farmington Daily Times, Alamogordo Daily News, Carlsbad Current-Argus, Deming Headlight and Silver City Sun-News  – plan to publish the article on their websites as early as Saturday afternoon and in their Sunday print editions. Those newspapers have a combined print circulation of more than 93,000 on Sundays.

The Ruidoso News, which doesn’t publish a print edition until Wednesday, will also publish the article.

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