FARMINGTON, N.M. (AP) — San Juan County is spending more providing health care for residents than it spends on its sheriff and detention center.
More than a quarter of the northwestern New Mexico county's residents lack insurance.
A U.S. Census Bureau report shows more than 33,000 San Juan County residents lacked insurance. Only heavily populated Dona Ana and Bernalillo counties had more uninsured people. Only Catron, Harding and McKinley counties had a higher percentage of uninsured residents.
The high number of uninsured is costing taxpayers in San Juan County. Many residents receive assistance from the county's Indigent Health Care Program. Program Director Liza Gomez tells the Farmington Daily Times (http://bit.ly/PP4T6O) that use of the program has steadily increased in recent years.
More than 2,000 people used the program last year, costing nearly $10 million.
Information from: The Daily Times, http://www.daily-times.com