Choosing and enrolling in a A type of insurance that pays for some or all of your medical expenses.
plan can be complex and confusing. There are several options available to help you through this process:
Indian Health Service (IHS) Benefits Coordinators at your local IHS or Tribal clinic can help you find different financial resources to help pay for IHS and non-IHS healthcare services. This might include A joint federal and state program that helps with medical costs for some people with limited income and resources., The federal health insurance program for people who are age 65 or older, certain younger people with disabilities, and people with End-Stage Renal Disease (permanent kidney failure requiring dialysis or a transplant)., private health insurance, or Veterans’ Benefits. Benefits Coordinators can also help you get referrals for non-IHS medical care.
Patient Navigators and Patient Financial Services Advisors at most hospitals and health clinics can assist patients with financial assistance or health insurance.
Insurance Brokers are licensed and regulated by the state to sell and negotiate health insurance. An insurance broker can sell health insurance from multiple insurance companies (versus an insurance agent, who only sells health insurance from one company).
In New Mexico, BeWell NM has counselors specifically for American Indians; call (855) 241-8137 or visit their office at 6403 Menaul Blvd. NE in Albuquerque.
In Colorado, Connection for Health Colorado has counselors specifically for American Indians. See the Colorado Department of Health Care Policy & Financing website or the Connection for Health Colorado Marketplace for Native Americans website or call (855) 6749, (303) 590-9675, or TTY (855) 346-3432.
Insurance Agents: Health insurance companies (or carriers) have their own specialists to assist you with purchasing their health insurance. Insurance agents will only sell insurance from the company they work for (versus insurance brokers, who can sell insurance from multiple companies). To find information about a specific health insurance company, visit their website or call the informational numbers on company flyers or brochures. But be aware: searching online can sometimes open you up to telemarketing or even fraudulent phone calls. Do not give your personal information to any individual over the phone or put it on any “online web form.” It is always better to speak with a licensed health insurance broker near you.
Health insurance providers in New Mexico have special American Indian representatives that you can talk to:
- Blue Cross Blue Shield Tribal Affairs , (505) 816-2210
- Molina Healthcare Tribal Liaison, (855) 542-1991
- Presbyterian Native American Affairs Director, (505) 983-5854.
Medicare: You can get help signing up for Medicare from IHS Benefits Coordinators, Patient Navigators, or Insurance Brokers. You can also talk to someone at your local A federal program that provides retirement, disability, and survivor benefits. Most Social Security benefits are based on taxes that you paid on your wages while working. Office or the New Mexico Aging and Disability Resource Center; call (800) 432-2080 or TTY (505) 476-4937.
The New Mexico Medical Insurance Pool was established by the New Mexico State Legislature in 1987 to provide access to health insurance coverage to residents of New Mexico who are denied health insurance or considered uninsurable due to or severe health conditions. See their website or call (844) 728-7896 for more information.