Governor Lets Medicaid Bill Become Law Without Signature

OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) — Oklahoma Gov. Kevin Stitt said Thursday he has let a bill putting some restrictions on his plan to privatize Medicaid become law without his signature.

Stitt has pushed forward with a plan to outsource management of the state’s Medicaid system to for-profit insurance companies, maintaining that that approach will maximize health care quality while cutting costs.

But much of the Republican-controlled Legislature opposes that proposal. The bill they passed imposes some restrictions on the privatization proposal, dubbed managed care.

Stitt says he’s concerned the bill could increase costs, but opted not to veto the measure.

“I have concerns that Senate Bill 131 will likely increase costs and limit our ability to improve health outcomes compared to the original plan I proposed and this bill could also make it more difficult to detect waste, fraud and abuse in our Medicaid system," he said in a statement. “I understand that many legislators are also aware of these issues and I am committed to working together to resolve them as we move forward with managed care in Oklahoma.”