October 1, 2022

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Oklahoma to outsource Medicaid care to four health insurance companies

• Humana Healthy Horizons

• Oklahoma Complete Health, a subsidiary of Centene Corp.

• United Healthcare

But the managed care plan pushed by Stitt faces opposition from some Republican and Democratic legislators and members of the medical community.

In a statement, the Oklahoma State Medical Association, Oklahoma Osteopathic Association and the Oklahoma chapter of the American Academy of Pediatrics said the state’s prior attempt with managed care was disastrous and resulted in many physicians being forced to stop seeing Medicaid patients.

Since the 1990s, Oklahoma has tried several times to implement managed care, to varying degrees of success. State health officials have said managed care will look dramatically different this time around.

“It is unfortunate that, rather than working with stakeholders and legislators on his managed care scheme, this administration has chosen to push through an ill-conceived plan that will have serious implications for our state’s most vulnerable and at-risk populations,” said Dr. Woody Jenkins, of Stillwater. “Real leadership involves more than buzzwords and partisan talking points. It requires dialogue and compromise, two things that have been sorely lacking during this process.”

The Oklahoma Hospital Association, Oklahoma Dental Association, Oklahoma Pharmacists Association and Oklahoma Medical Equipment Providers Association also oppose managed care.

Proponents of managed care say if patients get more coordinated care, like regular primary care visits and preventative care, more severe and potentially costly health problems can be caught early or avoided altogether. If the managed care companies are successful in driving down costs, they will profit from the state contracts.