A plan to test privatizing the management of health care services provided to the poor in Oklahoma has narrowly passed the state Senate over the objections of opponents concerned that it will lead to lower reimbursement rates for doctors and hospitals.
The Senate voted 25-21 on Thursday for the Oklahoma Medicaid Reform Act of 2014 by Republican Sen. Kim David of Porter. The bill now heads to the House, where it is expected to undergo changes.
David says the goal of the bill is to set up a pilot managed care program in which Medicaid recipients receive health care services from a private company that contracts with the state.
Opponents say the private companies will seek to increase profits by slashing provider reimbursement rates.
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