New Mexico

New Mexico derived its name from the Anglicized version of "Nuevo Mexico," the Spanish name for the upper Rio Grande. New Mexico is a unique state rich in art and history because of its strong heritage and traditions of Indian, Anglo, and Hispanic cultures. Native Americans, Mexicans, Spaniards and Europeans all have traveled to and established themselves in New Mexico. New Mexico covers 121,356 square miles, with a 2013 estimated population of 2,085,287 people – 695,104 living in rural New Mexico (USDA-ERS). Santa Fe, the capital, is located in the north-central region of the state. The state’s largest cities are Albuquerque, Las Cruces, Santa Fe and Rio Rancho. According to the U.S. Census Bureau, 82.9% of the state’s population is white, 10.4% is American Indian and Alaska Native, 2.5% Black/African American, 1.6% Asian, and 47.3% is of Hispanic/Latino origin (2013).

New Mexico Rural Healthcare Facilities

New Mexico Rural Healthcare Facilities map

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There are 37 hospitals in New Mexico (Kaiser, 2012), 29 of which are located in rural areas (North Carolina Rural Health Research and Policy Analysis Center, Dec. 2008). The state has 9 hospitals identified by the Flex Monitoring Team as Critical Access Hospitals (November 2014). There are 11 Rural Health Clinics in New Mexico (Kaiser, 2012), and 15 Federally Qualified Health Centers provide services at 119 sites in the state (Kaiser, 2011).

Selected Social Determinants of Health for Rural New Mexico

Most New Mexicans have some form of health insurance coverage, although 16.0% of its residents lack health insurance (Kaiser, 2013). According to the USDA Economic Research Service, the average per-capita income for New Mexicans in 2013 was $35,965, although rural per-capita income lagged at $35,597. Estimates from 2013 indicate a poverty rate of 23.8% exists in rural New Mexico, compared to a 20.2% level in urban areas of the state. The ERS reports, based on 2009-2013 ACS data, that 19.9% of the rural population has not completed high school, compared to 14.6% of urban populations. The unemployment rate in rural New Mexico is at 6.7%, while in urban New Mexico it is at 7.0% (USDA-ERS, 2013).

For a national comparison, please see an overview of the United States.

Data Sources
U.S. Census Bureau: State & County QuickFacts; USDA Economic Research Service: State Fact Sheets; Kaiser Family Foundation State Health Facts; Flex Monitoring Team: Critical Access Hospital List


New Mexico Office of Primary Care and Rural Health
Phone: 505.841.5869
Dedicated to improving primary care and rural health access in the State of New Mexico. A division of the Health Systems Bureau in the New Mexico Department of Health.
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There are more organizations related to New Mexico in the organizations section.