I've spent the past few days documenting the explosion of states implementing Tax Time Special Enrollment Periods. These are new policies, pioneered by Maryland a couple of years ago, which allow uninsured residents to simply check off a new box on their state tax returns which gives permission to the state treasury department and/or ACA exchange to determine whether the tax filer is eligible for free or low-cost healthcare coverage.
If the state determines that the filers/their families are indeed eligible for either Medicaid, CHIP, or a fully-subsidized ACA exchange policy, the new program then allows state agencies to contact the tax filer to let them know they're eligible and to either enroll them automatically or work with them to get them enrolled.
As I noted in a bunch of posts yesterday, several states have launched "Tax Time Special Enrollment Periods" (Maryland launched theirs a couple years ago; Colorado, Massachusetts & Pennsylvania are bringing their programs online right now). New Mexico is also moving their own version through the legislative process.
Well, it turns out (thanks to Louise Norris for the heads up) that Virginia also passed their own version of this bill last year...although in their case it's being phased in over a two year time period:
New Mexico Easy Healthcare Enrollment Bill Passes House With Unanimous Support
SANTA FE — HB 95, which would make it easier for New Mexicans to enroll in health insurance, passed the House floor with a unanimous vote Wednesday.
The bill would give New Mexico taxpayers the option to consent to the transfer of their information to the Human Services Department or to the New Mexico Health Insurance Exchange, to help them enroll in health insurance and other programs for which they might qualify.
“All New Mexicans deserve access to quality health care for themselves and their families,” Rep. Thomson said. “More than 23,000 uninsured New Mexicans will now gain easy access to the affordable health care that they deserve.”
This legislation was sponsored by Representatives Elizabeth “Liz” Thomson (D-Albuquerque) and Christine Chandler (D-Los Alamos), Senators Elizabeth “Liz” Stefanics (D-Cerrillos) and Brenda McKenna (D-Corrales).