Health Care

Kaitlyn Finley | May 18, 2021

State report: 25 percent of Oklahomans are on Medicaid

Kaitlyn Finley

According to the latest annual report from the Oklahoma Health Care Authority, more than 25 percent of Oklahomans were enrolled in Medicaid last year. Total enrollment reached 1,005,671 members.

Twenty years ago, approximately 16 percent of Oklahomans, or 545,111 individuals, were on Medicaid.

Costs have increased as enrollment has grown. All expenditures in 2020 for the state’s Medicaid program, also known as SoonerCare, totaled approximately $5.89 billion; Oklahoma’s share of the cost was $2.1 billion.

Source: Oklahoma Health Care Authority; figures adjusted for inflation using 2021 dollars

From February to July of last year, Oklahoma’s Medicaid program saw one of the largest increases in enrollment in the country as a percentage of the program, second only to Missouri. Oklahoma’s enrollment increased by more than 10 percent during this time.

Enrollment is set to increase significantly beginning later this summer. Beginning July 1, able-bodied adults will be eligible to receive Medicaid services. State officials have projected this expansion of Medicaid will add at least 200,000 new enrollees and will increase expenditures by more than $1 billion, with the state paying for up to $246 million annually.

Kaitlyn Finley Policy Research Fellow

Kaitlyn Finley

Policy Research Fellow

Kaitlyn Finley currently serves as a policy research fellow for OCPA with a focus on healthcare and welfare policy. Kaitlyn graduated from the University of Science and Arts of Oklahoma in 2018 with a Bachelor of Arts in Political Science. Previously, she served as a summer intern at OCPA and spent time in Washington D.C. interning for the Heritage Foundation and the U.S. Senate Committee on Environment and Public Works.

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