The Oklahoma Supreme Court has struck down the privatization of Medicaid. Tuesday, the court ruled 6-3 it is not constitutional.
The ruling stated the Oklahoma Health Care Authority's actions were invalid under Oklahoma law.
The CEO of the Oklahoma Health Care Authority, Kevin Corbett responded to the rulings on Wednesday.
"While we are disappointed in the Supreme Court ruling, we respect their decision and continue to focus on providing quality care to the more than one million Oklahomans we serve through SoonerCare,” said Corbett.
The ruling stated the court took issue with the new managed care model, SoonerSelect. It said the contracts which were drafted with insurance companies needs approval from lawmakers to move forward.
"We are already in discussion like everyone else what does it mean?” said Dr. Mary Clarke, the President of the Oklahoma Medical Association. “Are we going to be able to fully renegotiate the contracts and if so, how quickly can we get that done?”
Clarke said if the contracts were to hold up, the insurance companies that have a 15% overhead would take money away from patient care.
"In essence the 85 cents on the dollar would go to taking care of the patients,” said Clarke. “As it stands right now 96 cents on the dollar goes to taking care of Medicaid patients. That is a huge gap and when we are talking about $2 billion that is enormous."
Gov. Kevin Stitt also reacted to the ruling Wednesday sending this statement:
“The Supreme Court’s ruling will unnecessarily delay Oklahoma’s efforts to improve health outcomes through managed care, which the Legislature confirmed is the right path forward for our state through Senate Bill 131. I will continue to work with the Oklahoma Health Care Authority to determine the next steps in the process.”
Clarke said it is a waiting game right now to see how they move forward with manage care.
"At this point we aren’t sure what will happen with the original contracts the governor signed back in February,” said Clarke.