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State, Tribal Leaders Seek Insure Oklahoma Expansion

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www.insureoklahoma.org

State and tribal leaders in Oklahoma are exploring opportunities for a federal waiver that could mean health insurance for more than 40,000 low-income uninsured tribal members in the state.

While state leaders oppose a Medicaid expansion offered under the federal health care law, this latest idea to expand Insure Oklahoma would involve no state funds.

Oklahoma Health Care Authority's Chief Executive Nico Gomez says talks are underway about seeking a waiver to expand the state's Insure Oklahoma program to include some of the estimated 80,000 Native Americans without health insurance.

Gomez estimated as many as half of those tribal citizens could qualify, depending on where the income threshold is set.

The proposed expansion would split the health insurance premium cost between the tribal citizen, the tribe and the federal government.

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