NEW MEXICO (KRQE) – Two lawmakers are sponsoring a bill that would help amputees in New Mexico. The bill would make it easier and more affordable for amputees to get prosthetics designed for physical activity.
Kyle Stepp had his leg amputated in October 2020 after a mountain biking crash. Callaway Lewis lost her leg in February 2021 during a rock climbing accident. Both now need a prosthetic leg to get around, but insurance will only cover a prosthetic device they deem ‘medically necessary.’ That means devices that give Stepp and Lewis the ability to run, jump and climb are not covered by insurance. This forces them to pay out of pocket for a running blade, which could cost anywhere from $2,000 to $15,000 depending on the needs of the patient.
Stepp and Lewis are now working with Representative Elizabeth Thomson and Representative Elect Kathleen Cates to pass the “So New Mexicans Can Move Bill.” Cates says if the bill is passed, people could see an increase in premiums, but expects over half-a-million dollars in reductions to health care costs in the long term. The bill will be introduced during the health and human services committee.