New Mexico Health Insurance Exchange Hires CEO; Delays Decision On Status

Jul 12, 2014

  At a special board meeting Friday, the New Mexico Health Insurance Exchange (NMHIX) Board of Directors decided to delay a possible decision on whether it would remain as part of the FFM (Federally Facilitated Marketplace) or become a state-based exchange until its July board meeting and selected Amy Dowd as the NMHIX permanent Chief Executive Officer (CEO).

The NMHIX will possibly decide whether to remain a FFM for the 2014-2015 individual open enrollment period scheduled to begin November 15, 2014 at its next board meeting, scheduled July 25, 2015. The Exchange will continue to operate its own SHOP (Small Business Health Options) platform for small businesses and their employees to enroll in federally qualified health plans.

Following the completion of a nationwide search and a thorough review process, the Board of the NMHIX voted to extend an offer to Dowd, who received unanimous support from the Board, to become the permanent NMHIX CEO.  Dowd is currently the Chief Executive Officer of the Idaho Health Insurance Exchange.  She has more than 20 years of leadership experience and project management, and extensive knowledge of health insurance and healthcare marketplace trends.

She led efforts to establish the Idaho Health Insurance Exchange, Your Health Idaho, from inception, achieving the second highest exchange enrollment per capita in the nation within four months of initial launch.  Her previous experience includes positions with a large national accounting firm, as a health care consultant, and in a number of management positions with Excellus BlueCross BlueShield.

“We very much appreciate all of the effort and dedication that our Interim CEO, Mike Nuñez, put forth in getting the New Mexico Health Insurance Exchange up and running since we started on this journey about one year ago.  It was a difficult board decision, but we felt  Dowd has the experience needed and was the best qualified to lead the New Mexico Exchange on a pathway to success for 2015 open enrollment and beyond, and I look forward to working with her” said NMHIX Board Chair Dr. J. R. Damron.

Damron said the Board will extend a contract offer to Dowd and is looking forward to having her join the NMHIX in the near future.  In the interim, the board voted to extend Nuñez’s Interim CEO contract during the transition until Dowd joins the NMHIX.

As of June 30, 2014 the New Mexico Health Insurance Exchange had 34,200 individuals enrolled in qualified health plans.  An additional 126 employers were enrolled in SHOP, with 447 employees and 202 dependents receiving insurance coverage for a total of 34,849 individuals enrolled through NMHIX.

Information from New Mexico Health Insurance Exchange