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Political considerations

Oklahoman Modified: November 29, 2012 at 8:57 am •  Published: November 28, 2012

Fallin depriving state better health care

Oklahoma has the highest increase in diabetes in the country. Gov. Mary Fallin won't develop a health care exchange and she's rejecting about $3.6 billion dollars in federal support for health care. Why is a state with such poor health statistics refusing federal support for its health care programs? It can't be an aversion to federal money. Oklahoma is about 10th in the nation in terms of a federal presence in the state's economy. Is it a matter of saying the state will take care of this and provide adequate health care because it's a state responsibility? This is doubtful, since it isn't done under existing conditions. In fact, the state lags behind other states in a number of other areas, such as education, child welfare and highway safety.

Fallin and Attorney General Scott Pruitt are depriving Oklahomans of better health care apparently as a matter of ideological purity. If so, they're putting political considerations ahead of the state's well-being. The state needs better health care than it has, and the federal government can be instrumental in having that happen.

Richard Wells, Norman


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