Fallin files executive order developing work requirement for those receiving Medicaid

Gov. Fallin speaks Nov. 21 after issuing three executive orders aimed at increasing government efficiency. (KOKH/Ben Latham)

Oklahoma's governor has issued an executive order to develop a work requirement in the state's Medicaid program.

The order, filed March 6 by Governor Mary Fallin, directs the Oklahoma Health Care Authority to file federal waivers and state plan amendments in the next six months to the governor and legislature.

“We in Oklahoma should require people who receive Medicaid assistance to work, if they are able,” Fallin said. “A core objective of the Medicaid program is to help low-income families and individuals attain capability for independence. Work requirements in other welfare programs have helped move individuals from welfare to work.”

Similar proposals have been approved by the federal Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services for Kentucky, Indiana and Arkansas.

Those who received Medicaid would be required to work unless they met one of the following exemptions:

  • Those under the age of 19 and over the age of 64.
  • Those medically certified as physically or mentally unfit for employment.
  • Those who are pregnant.
  • A parent or caretaker responsible for the care of a dependent child under the age of 6.
  • A parent or caretaker personally providing the care for a dependent child with serious medical conditions or with a disability.
  • Those receiving unemployment compensation and complying with work requirements that are part of the federal-state unemployment compensation system.
  • Those participating in a drug addiction or alcoholic treatment and rehabilitation program.
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