Governor Lujan Grisham unveils New Mexico Health Care Authority transition plan

Press Release From New Mexico Human Services Department – Released November 1, 2023

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SANTA FE – Today, Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham announced a major milestone for the state of New Mexico, as the transition for the New Mexico Health Care Authority (HCA) was officially submitted, in compliance with Senate Bill 16. This comprehensive plan was submitted to the Legislative Finance Committee and the Legislative Health and Human Services Committee on November 1, 2023.  

“Establishing the New Mexico Health Care Authority means far more than changing the name of a state agency,” said Gov. Lujan Grisham. “The HCA’s creation marks a monumental step toward enhancing health outcomes, cost-effectiveness, health care accessibility, and the overall welfare of our state’s residents.” 

Effective July 1, 2024, the New Mexico Health Care Authority will officially take on the role of a new executive department, orchestrating a seamless integration of the Human Services Department (HSD), the Employee Benefits Bureau from the General Services Department, and the Division of Health Improvement and Developmental Disabilities Supports Division from the Department of Health. This new agency will ensure:  

  • Transparency and clarity about New Mexico’s health system performance. 
  • Oversight and accountability to measure and improve the quality of care and health outcomes. 
  • Cost-effectiveness and a proactive approach to managing state healthcare funds. 
  • Customer service through a non-wrong door approach to healthcare and safety-net programs. 
  • A unified vision and strategy for healthcare services, coverage, and benefit delivery to New Mexicans. 

The HCA will leverage the purchasing power of the state’s Medicaid program, benefiting over 180,000 public employees and retirees by enhancing cost-effectiveness, quality care, and health outcomes across New Mexico. This consolidation of executive units within the HCA framework represents a unique opportunity to leverage expertise, optimize data analytics, and instill accountability for substantial improvements in the state’s healthcare system. 

“The establishment of the New Mexico Health Care Authority emphasizes our commitment to a healthier New Mexico. This strategic consolidation positions us to enhance healthcare accessibility and address disparities in the state’s healthcare landscape,” said Kari Armijo, cabinet secretary for the New Mexico Human Services Department.  

Established through the passage of Senate Bill 16 during the 2023 New Mexico Legislative session and signed into law by Gov. Lujan Grisham, the HCA will work to expand access to care in rural communities, build a robust behavioral health system, and administer income and child support programs to combat poverty and food insecurity. 

The Lujan Grisham administration eagerly anticipates its continued partnership with the Legislature to advance the mission, vision, and goals of the New Mexico Health Care Authority,  building a healthier future for all New Mexicans. 

For more information about the New Mexico Health Care Authority and its mission, please visit