NEW MEXICO (KRQE) – Monday morning, Mar. 6, the House Education Committee signed off on Senate Bill 397 on a 9 to 4 vote. The bill aims to provide aid to healthcare services in New Mexico schools.

If the bill is approved, the New Mexico Department of Health(DOH) will provide money and technical assistance to create and operate centers that provide healthcare services to students across the state. According to the DOH, aid is already being given to 16 providers at 54 schools throughout the state, but this bill would formally put that aid into state law.

“We’re doing nothing else but codifying into statute and legitimizing school-based health centers to ensure that these children, our children, can continue to have access to their health care in the schools,” says a state legislator. According to officials, school districts would need to submit applications to the Department of Health in order to receive this assistance.