Sen. Brown lauds passage of Health Care Choice Act

Legislative Staff Release

Published: 28-May-2010

Sen. Bill Brown on Friday (May 28) said the passage of Senate Bill 2046, the Health Care Choice Act, would increase the availability and affordability of health insurance coverage for Oklahomans. S.B. 2046 was approved by the House of Representatives on Thursday.

The measure allows insurance companies within the state to sell coverage plans across state lines, and allows out-of-state insurers to issue accident and health policies in Oklahoma.

“This measure will help bring competition and choice to the state and ultimately result in reduced prices for consumers,” said Brown, a Tulsa Republican. “Limited markets drive up costs, and create a disincentive for improved services.  A more open and fair process is always going to work to the benefit of the consumer.”

The Conference Committee Substitute for S.B. 2046 permits the Oklahoma Insurance Commissioner to promulgate rules necessary to implement the legislation, and negotiate compacts with other states to allow out-of-state insurers to sell insurance in Oklahoma. “Oklahomans should be given the opportunity to choose health insurance plans that are more affordable and flexible than existing market policies,” Brown said. 

“This measure accomplishes that goal while providing appropriate consumer protections by allowing the Insurance Commissioner to regulate the market conduct and financial solvency of out-of state insurers,” he concluded.