News Release

November 13, 2014

OHCA Contacts: Jo Kilgore - (405) 522-7474, Cate Jeffries - (405) 522-5616    

Insure Oklahoma a health insurance option for some business owners 

Business owners searching for affordable employee health insurance options this open enrollment season may qualify for Insure Oklahoma, an innovative state program that helps bridge the gap in health care coverage for low-income working adults. The program is available to businesses with 99 or fewer employees. 

Through Insure Oklahoma, 60 percent of health premium costs are covered by state and federal funding. Employers contribute 25 percent; qualified employees contribute 15 percent but no more than three percent of gross household income. 

Participating in Insure Oklahoma is not only good for your employees’ health, it’s a good business decision,” said Oklahoma Health Care Authority CEO Nico Gomez, who cited the Oklahoma Business Health and Wellness Survey, which was released Nov. 7. 

“Business owners who have partnered with Insure Oklahoma report financial benefits, increased employee morale and reduced absenteeism,” Gomez said. “They also say Insure Oklahoma has helped in attracting and retaining employees.” 

Insure Oklahoma assisted more than 17,000 Oklahomans with health coverage in October. 

Qualifying for the Insure Oklahoma Employer-Sponsored Insurance (ESI) Plan 

 · Businesses must have 99 or fewer employees; be located in Oklahoma; offer an Insure Oklahoma-qualified health plan; and, contribute at least 25 percent of premiums for qualified employees. 

 · Employees must be between the ages of 19 and 64; be an Oklahoma resident and meet citizenship guidelines; have a gross household income at or below 200 percent of the federal poverty level (FPL); and, contribute up to 15 percent of their monthly health premium costs (not to exceed three percent of gross annual household income). Part-time employees who work 23 hours or fewer per week also may qualify. 

In addition to the employer-sponsored plan for businesses, an individual plan is available to low-income Oklahomans who do not qualify for employer-sponsored insurance, Medicare or Medicaid. Income guidelines and other qualifications differ from the employer-sponsored plans and can be found at www.insureoklahoma.org. 

There is no enrollment period or application deadline. Business owners or individuals may apply for health insurance through Insure Oklahoma at any time.  

Business owners who are interested in ESI should contact their local health insurance agent. For more information about Insure Oklahoma, if you do not have a health insurance agent or would like more information about the individual plan, call 888-365-3742 or visit  www.insureoklahoma.org.  

 About OHCA 

 The Oklahoma Health Care Authority (OHCA) administers Oklahoma’s Medicaid program, known as SoonerCare, and Insure Oklahoma, a premium assistance program funded by tobacco tax revenue. SoonerCare works to improve the health outcomes of Oklahomans by ensuring that medically necessary benefits and services are responsive to the health care needs of our members. Qualifying Oklahomans include low-income children, pregnant women, seniors, the disabled, those being treated for breast or cervical cancer and those seeking family planning services. All must meet income guidelines. Insure Oklahoma assists qualifying adults and small business employees in obtaining health care coverage for themselves and their families. OHCA works with our current 819,110 members, our statewide network of 40,161 health care providers and numerous state and local partners to promote responsible health care service utilization, healthy behaviors and improved health outcomes. For more information, visit www.okhca.org or www.insureoklahoma.org.