On Friday, the New Mexico Human Services Department announced two additional public hearings and two other meetings on its proposed Medicaid revamp. The first hearing will be held Monday, June 25 in Santa Fe.


Last month, after nearly a year (and more than $1 million) spent quietly working on a proposal to overhaul New Mexico's Medicaid program, the state submitted its proposal to federal authorities for review.

The proposal aimed to trim Medicaid costs in various ways. One change would require all Native Americans in the Medicaid program, which provides health care for low-income residents, to use state-contracted health care providers (known as managed-care organizations, or MCOs) rather than using tribal or local programs.

But many tribal residents found this approach problematic—and, as SFR

, felt that their particular concerns weren't heard or incorporated into the revamp proposal.

Matt Kennicott, the spokesman for HSD, the state agency that manages Medicaid within New Mexico, told SFR that the feds didn't reject the revamp proposal, but announced on Friday that the state would "seek additional input." From the presser:

"With the initial submission of our waiver to CMS, we have seen the opportunity to seek out further input from New Mexicans on our work on Centennial Care," said Sidonie Squier, Secretary of the Human Services Department. "This input will help us further shape the future of a sustainable Medicaid program to provide services to those most in need while avoiding cuts in the program. It will also help guide our discussions with the federal government as approval of the waiver progresses."

Care about the future of Medicaid in New Mexico? Check out these meetings (from the presser, again):