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Gov. Mary Fallin announces Insure Oklahoma extension

The Insure Oklahoma program has been granted a one-year extension, Gov. Mary Fallin announced.
by Jaclyn Cosgrove Modified: June 30, 2014 at 8:26 pm •  Published: June 30, 2014
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Gov. Mary Fallin announced Monday the state of Oklahoma has been granted a one-year extension for the Insure Oklahoma program.

The program, scheduled to expire at the end of 2014, has been extended through Dec. 31, 2015.

“This is great news for the thousands of adults and children who currently buy health insurance through Insure Oklahoma,” Fallin said in a news release. “These Oklahomans and their families can now be assured that they won’t lose their insurance on Jan. 1.”

About 19,000 low-income Oklahomans are enrolled in coverage through Insure Oklahoma, a program administered by the Oklahoma Health Care Authority.

This includes about 14,000 in the Insure Oklahoma employer-sponsored insurance and about 5,000 in individual plans, according to the Oklahoma Health Care Authority.

The program is financed with state tobacco tax money, matched with federal dollars, according to Fallin’s office.

The total program expenditure for Insure Oklahoma for the 2014 fiscal year was about $116 million.

No changes required

The program was set to expire at the end of 2013, but the federal government in September granted the program a one-year extension, although that extension changed income guidelines for people enrolled in individual plans.

The federal government did not require any changes to the program under the extension announced Monday.

Previously, the Insure Oklahoma individual plan program was available to people who earned up to 200 percent of the federal poverty level.

However, after the first extension, Oklahoma was required to change its guidelines, with the individual plan coverage program only available to workers who make up to 100 percent of the federal poverty level.

The Oklahoma Health Care Authority sent about 7,325 termination letters at the end of September.

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by Jaclyn Cosgrove
Medical and Health Reporter
Jaclyn Cosgrove writes about health, public policy and medicine in Oklahoma, among other topics. She is an Oklahoma State University graduate. Jaclyn grew up in the southeast region of the state and enjoys writing about rural Oklahoma. She is...
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