Oklahoma lawmakers have determined that the state will not work to build its own health insurance exchange. The exchange is mandated by the Affordable Care Act. Federal officials claim that insurance exchanges would give consumers access to affordable coverage and help reduce the cost of insurance premiums. Oklahoma legislators are not keen to take this as fact, however, and will wait until the U.S. Supreme Court has reviewed the federal law before they continue to work to comply with the federal government’s mandates.
Oklahoma is one of many states that stand in opposition to the Affordable Care Act. These states have accused the federal government of overstepping its boundaries. The majority of these accusations are centered on a provision of the Affordable Care Act that requires all Americans to purchase and maintain some form of health insurance policy. Earlier in the year, Oklahoma returned federal money that would have helped in the construction of an exchange system.
Governor Mary Fallin supports the move of legislators and believes that the U.S. Supreme Court will ultimately strike down the federal law. If the Court does not find the law unconstitutional, however, the state could lose the ability to create an exchange program itself. If this is the case, the federal government will build one in the state and neither lawmakers nor state regulators will be able to affect how the program is run or what kind of insurance policies can be offered through it.