What you need to know about coverage expansion

Although time is running out, legislators could still advance a bill this session – or they may punt to a summer working group, putting the issue on a collision course with a likely ballot initiative. Regardless, this is a complex issue that inevitably raises a lot of question. Some of the most popular ones, and their answers, are below [More...]

“Health coverage expansion saved my life.”

Watch the video to hear Steve's story, and then tell your lawmakers to bring our federal tax dollars back home to Oklahoma. Legislators and Governor Stitt still have time to do the right thing this session. [More...]

Substance use disorders are a public health crisis in Oklahoma. Expanding health care coverage will help.

Accepting federal funds to expand access to health care--which Oklahoma has not done-- is one of the most effective tools states have to combat the opioid crisis and other forms of addiction. Expanding access to care will provide Oklahomans with a pathway to recovery and make Oklahoma a healthier state. [More...]

Oklahoma has a health care problem. Some lawmakers are advancing the wrong solution.

Oklahoma has the second-highest uninsured rate in the country, with nearly 1 in every 7 Oklahomans uninsured. This is a big problem – and some legislators are pushing to expand the availability of short-term insurance and association health plans (AHPs). Unfortunately, these are lousy insurance options. [More...]

Oklahoma has the chance to expand access to care. Here’s why that matters.

It’s been a few years since coverage expansion has been seriously entertained by state leadership, and both the state and federal landscape has shifted significantly in the meantime. Here’s a refresher of who should be covered. [More...]

Money matters for child development. Healthier finances means a healthier future for children in Oklahoma.

Policies that support low-income families improve the well-being of children. Policymakers have a number of options for improving economic prospects for Oklahoma’s working families and in turn improving health - including their mental health. Two practical changes are to restore the refundability of the Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC) and increase the minimum wage. Both of these policy changes would provide more economic stability for families, reducing the risk of childhood trauma and poor mental health outcomes that stem from these adverse experiences. Improving the financial well-being of families creates healthier and economically thriving communities. [More...]

Oklahoma’s SoonerCare work requirement is in federal hands. Now what?

Before 2018, federal regulators had not allowed any state make Medicaid coverage contingent on meeting a work requirement. Most people on Medicaid who can work already do work, and those who don't work have good reasons for not working. However, reversing decades of precedent, the Trump administration is encouraging states to submit proposals to cut coverage for members who don't meet a work reporting requirement. [More...]

Bill Watch: Optimism and caution on the health care front

In previous years, health care legislation has often come with a sense of existential crisis, as budget cuts and efforts to take away coverage have loomed large. But this year, with a new administration and a healthier budget, lawmakers have a chance to reverse course and offer more readily accessible quality health care in Oklahoma. [More...]

OK PolicyCast 43: 2019 Bill Watch, Part 1

It's a new year, a new Legislature, a new governor, and many new bills that could have a big impact on Oklahomans' lives. In this episode, Gene Perry talks to OK Policy's Executive Director David Blatt and Policy Director Carly Putnam about the big issues we're keeping an eye on this year related to the state budget, taxes, and health care. In a future episode, we'll talk about other bills we're tracking related to education, criminal justice, and economic opportunity. [More...]

Oklahoma’s Medicaid agency should withdraw plan to terminate health coverage over returned mail

For many low-income Oklahomans, having a place to call home isn’t something you can take for granted. Many families struggle with high rent, frequent evictions, unstable family environments, and more. Now, the state Medicaid agency, the Oklahoma Health Care Authority (OHCA), has proposed a new policy to terminate coverage for families who move and don’t update their address quickly enough in agency records. [More...]