Feria de Salud: Behavioral Health Fair on the Affordable Care Act & Health Exchanges

Objective: To support, connect and assist consumers to live healthy and improve their quality of life through community resources or services; to help consumers understand the Affordable Care Act

Description: Albuquerque Center for Hope & Recovery (ACHR) organized and hosted the first Feria de Salud (behavioral health fair) in New Mexico centered on healthcare reform for businesses and consumers. This effort included a health exchange awareness campaign at the behavioral health fair. Consumer friendly materials were distributed, and messages were tailored to help consumers understand the implementation of the Affordable Care Act and its effects on consumers,businesses and behavioral health services. Topics covered included services offered through the New Mexico Health Insurance Exchange, eligibility and enrollment, health care reform and behavioral health services, outreach and enrollment assistance, choosing a health plan, and changes to behavioral health services. The effort also sought to address disparities due to stigma, isolation, lack of peer support or network, and need to access and receive community resources and services.

Population of Focus: American Indian or Alaska Native, Hispanic or Latino, White, Adults, Transition aged, Homeless

Setting: Urban. The behavioral health fair was held at the Albuquerque Hispano Chamber of Commerce.

Level of Intervention: County, City, Community. Individual

Resources/Qualifications Needed: Agency peer managers; consumer friendly materials, messaging and education to help consumers understand the implementation of the Affordable Care Act and effects on consumers. The fair was funded by a grant from SAMHSA and the Center for Social Innovation to educate the behavioral health community on Health Care Reform and the Affordable Care Act.

Partners: The fair was a multi-partner effort including: Presbyterian Healthcare, Lovelace, BlueCross/Blue Shield, Optum Health, Molian, Division of Vocational Rehabilitation, Con Alma Health Foundation, Casa de Salud, and the New Mexico Heatlh Insurance Exchange.

Background: Albuquerque Center for Hope & Recovery (ACHR) is a consumer based and operated agency. The agency has served as a drop in center, outreach and support environment for peers to connect with other peers. ACHR was founded by recipients of mental health services in the Albuquerque area in 2001, and was formerly known as the Jeff Revel’s Albuquerque Drop-In Center. The mission of ACHR is to support people who live with mental health, or co-occurring mental health and substance abuse challenges. Through peer support, in a safe environment, ACHR aims to help people experience positive life growth by focusing on hope, humor and personal responsibility.


Elise Padilla, Director
Albuquerque Center for Hope & Recovery