Public Health New Mexico

KUNM's Public Health New Mexico reporting project provides in-depth, investigative and continuous coverage of public health in New Mexico, with an emphasis on poverty. For all articles and web exclusive content, go to publichealthnm.org 

HSD To Take Public Comment On Medicaid Overhaul

Jun 13, 2017
Mark_K_ / Flickr via Creative Commons

The New Mexico Human Services Department released its plan for the fate of Medicaid, and it includes massive cuts that could sever coverage for thousands.

Major Education Lawsuit Heads To Trial

Jun 12, 2017

Two civil rights groups are taking New Mexico’s public education system to court. They say the state doesn’t fund education well enough, doesn’t provide the right programming and is violating some students’ rights.

The trial started Monday in Santa Fe. 

Advocates File Lawsuit Over Trump Hold On Methane Rules

Jun 10, 2017
Jeremy Buckingham / Flickr via Creative Commons

The Environmental Protection Agency and the Trump Administration are facing a lawsuit after they suspended a rule to curb oil and gas industry methane emissions for 90 days.

OpenClipArt-Vector via Pixabay / Creative Commons License

As Republicans work to fulfill their promises to repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act, the future of healthcare in the U.S. is up in the air. In New Mexico, health insurance carriers have to submit their proposed premium rates by this weekend. After state officials review them, the public will have 10 days to weigh in.

Thaliesin via Pixabay / Creative Commons License

The state spent almost half its 2015 child behavioral health dollars on expensive outpatient programs that have not been shown to be effective, according to a report presented to lawmakers Wednesday.

State Moves Ahead With Toxic Plume Cleanup

Jun 5, 2017
Ed Williams

Over two decades ago, toxic dry cleaning chemicals seeped into the groundwater from a chemical distribution company’s warehouse near downtown Albuquerque. Today the plume spreads from Laun-Dry Supply Company about a mile and a half eastward towards I-25.

After a long investigation, the New Mexico Environment Department is poised to move forward with a full-scale cleanup of the chemical plume.

Lottery Scholarship Dips Down To 60 Percent Coverage

Jun 1, 2017
Chris Jones / Flickr via Creative Commons

The Higher Education Department announced this week that the share of tuition covered by the lottery scholarship will drop from 90 percent to 60 percent. But student leaders say the scholarship is vital for students who rely on it. 

Rashad Mahmood, KUNM

New Mexico environment officials say they’ll present a plan to clean up a toxic underground plume at a public meeting Thursday evening in Albuquerque.

Massachusetts General Hospital and Draper Labs via Wikimedia / Creative Commons

LISTEN: May is Mental Health Awareness Month. In 2014 voters in Bernalillo County voted in favor of a tax for increased mental health services. This came after the shooting by police of James Boyd, a homeless man who had schizophrenia, as well as other shootings by police of people who struggled with mental illness. The tax went into effect in 2015 and is providing up to $20 million annually for new programs through the Bernalillo County Behavioral Health Initiative.

Ed Williams

A drug that can reverse a heroin overdose is set to become more widely available in New Mexico. It’s the latest attempt to fight the opioid epidemic here—but even as naloxone becomes more available, other addiction and treatment services are struggling.

What Does Repeal And Replace Mean For N.M.?

May 10, 2017
DarkoStojanovic via Pixabay / creative commons license

KUNM Call In Show 5/11 8a: Call 1-877-899-5866. With Republican plans to repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act moving through congress, the future of healthcare in New Mexico is facing a lot of uncertainty. We’ll look at what changing the healthcare law could mean for New Mexicans, and for our state’s Medicaid system and insurance markets.

GOP Healthcare Bill Raises Questions, Concerns

May 4, 2017
Bjoertvedt / Creative Commons License via Wikimedia Commons

Republican efforts to repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act passed a major hurdle Thursday after the House of Representatives voted for a new health law, the American Healthcare Act. KUNM’s Chris Boros spoke with Ed Williams of the Public Health New Mexico project about reactions in New Mexico.

'Time Is Brain' When You Have A Stroke

Apr 26, 2017
Ed Williams/KUNM

Stroke is one of the most common medical emergencies. The effects of a stroke last a lifetime, and treating the condition can be extremely expensive. But if doctors can diagnose and treat a stroke quickly, they can reduce the damage a patient suffers. 

Ed Williams

New Mexico will receive $4.8 million in federal dollars for opioid treatment and prevention this year. The money comes from the 21st Century Cures Act, a bill signed by President Obama in December that gives states new funding to fight the opioid epidemic. 

ABQ Upholds Gas Plant’s Permit

Apr 13, 2017
Ed Williams

Honstein Oil Company’s gasoline distribution plant is located in the middle of a low-income Albuquerque neighborhood, and just a few blocks from an elementary school. Environmental justice groups have been asking the city to revoke the plant’s permit for years. The city dismissed the group’s appeal Wednesday. 

Governor Vetoes Home Visiting Bill

Apr 11, 2017
Walt Stoneburner via Flickr (cropped) / Creative Commons License

One of the bills that Governor Susana Martinez vetoed last week would have set up a Medicaid-funded home visiting program for new parents. The move has disappointed some doctors and child advocates.

NM Counties Lose Years To Poverty And Drugs

Mar 31, 2017
JadeXJustice via Flickr / Creative Commons

A new report breaks down potential years of life lost when people die before the age of 75 and younger people are dying earlier.  

Asaavedra32 via Wikimedia / Creative Commons License

This week Attorney General Jeff Sessions said he would withhold federal grants to cities that don’t follow federal rules on immigration enforcement. Santa Fe Mayor Javier Gonzales has been an outspoken critic of the Trump Administration’s stance on immigration. He says he won’t be changing the city’s openly immigrant-friendly policies.

Advocates Celebrate Withdrawal Of GOP Health Plan

Mar 24, 2017
Images Money / Creative Commons via Flickr

Local anti-poverty advocates are thrilled that House Republicans pulled their proposal to replace the Affordable Care Act Friday before a vote. 

APD: We're Still Committed To Reform

Mar 16, 2017
MoDOT Photos via Flickr / Creative Commons License

The Trump Administration’s approach to reviewing local police departments’ use of force practices has some local police reform advocates concerned. But the Albuquerque Police Department plans to fulfill the requirements of a DOJ settlement agreement on police use of force.

woodleywonderworks / Creative Commons via Flickr

Republicans in Congress have released their plan for replacing the Affordable Care Act and children’s advocates are worried about low-income kids in New Mexico.

Los Alamos Ditches Federal Lunch Program

Mar 3, 2017
US Department of Agriculture / Creative Commons via Flickr

The Los Alamos School District is going to pull out of the National School Lunch Program next year.

Borderlands Under Trump

Feb 27, 2017
Marisa Demarco

KUNM Call In Show 3/2 8a: Call now toll-free 1-877-899-5866. President Trump has issued executive orders that beef up immigration enforcement, and that also affect refugees and travelers from certain majority-Muslim countries. Is toughening rules on immigrants and refugees a good thing for New Mexico? What are the implications of these rules, and how are local elected officials responding? 

Bjoertvedt / Creative Commons License via Wikimedia Commons

Republicans unveiled a plan to repeal the Affordable Care Act last week. U.S. Senator Martin Heinrich has been a vocal critic of repealing the healthcare law. He spoke with KUNM's Ed Williams about what changes to the ACA could mean for this state. 

ICE Raids Target Las Cruces Immigrants

Feb 16, 2017
Groupuscule / creative commons license via Wikimedia

Cities across the country have reported an uptick in federal immigration raids. On Wednesday Immigration and Customs Enforcement arrested undocumented immigrants in Las Cruces.

Sarah Silva of the immigrant rights group NM Café has been leading protests against the ICE operations in Doña Ana County. She spoke with KUNM about the immigration raids there. 

Protesters Denounce ACA Repeal Effort

Feb 16, 2017
Ed Williams

A national bus tour protesting Republican efforts to repeal the Affordable Care Act is passing through New Mexico. The Save My Care campaign held a rally in Albuquerque Wednesday.

Measure Would Tighten Restrictions On Use Of Restraints

Feb 15, 2017
Victor Björkund via Flickr / CREATIVE COMMONS

Students with disabilities in New Mexico are subjected to physical restraint and seclusion at a much higher rate than other students. Lawmakers are considering a bill that would limit the practices.

Seventy six percent of public school students in New Mexico who are subjected to restraints are students with disabilities, according to data from the Department of Education’s Office of Civil Rights. There are no federal laws regulating restraint and seclusion.

Overdose Immunity Bill Advances

Feb 13, 2017
Ed Williams

The New Mexico Senate approved a bill Monday that provides more legal protection to people calling 911 to report a drug overdose. Lawmakers hope the bill will encourage more people to call for help.

Wikimedia Commons via CC

The first time an atomic bomb was ever detonated, it happened in New Mexico. The Trinity test spread radiation far and wide here in 1945. People fighting for the health effects of the blast to be acknowledged by the federal government released the first extensive report on Friday, Feb. 10.

Clever Cupcakes via Flickr / Creative Commons

 

KUNM Callin Show 2/16 8a: New Mexico expanded Medicaid under the Affordable Care Act and the number of people covered by the program will grow to more than 900,000 by the end of June. That's about 44 percent of the state's population.

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