Budget & Tax

Countdown to the budget deal: A look at health care spending

May 10, 2024

Curtis Shelton

We’re now in the final month of the 2024 legislative session and budget talks are proceeding at the state Capitol. In my last article I looked at the growth of education spending in Oklahoma. Today we’ll look at Oklahoma’s second-largest state agency in terms of appropriations, which has also been one of its fastest-growing state agencies over the past 20 years. 

Since 2004 the Oklahoma Health Care Authority has grown by 104 percent—from an appropriated budget of $719 million to $1.5 billion (when adjusted to current dollars). The Oklahoma Health Care Authority is the state agency responsible for running the state’s Medicaid program. Since State Question 802 expanded Medicaid, the agency’s budget has grown by 28 percent.

Sources: Oklahoma Annual Comprehensive Financial ReportsOklahoma House of Representatives Fiscal Summary; U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, CPI Inflation Calculator