Protecting Oregon's most Vulnerable

Governor Kulongoski helped create the Oregon Prescription Drug Program, making prescription drugs available and affordable to uninsured, low-income Oregonians 54 years of age or older. Since the creation, more than 1500 Oregonians without prescription drug coverage now have access to critical medications. Public entities – such as state agencies and local governments – are also eligible to participate, and the Governor’s goal is to expand the program further to more individuals and private businesses.

As part of Governor Kulongoski’s commitment to expanding access to health care coverage, the Governor created two health insurance benefit plans targeted to employees of uninsured small businesses. The Alternative Group Plan provides a low-cost alternative to basic and catastrophic plans on the market by covering essential services for employees and their spouses. The Children’s Group Plan is a comprehensive health benefit plan, covering children up to age 23, which can be purchased as a stand-alone or as a companion to the Alternative Group Plan. There are an estimated 30,000 employers with as many as 200,000 employees that are potentially eligible for these plans.

As part of the Governor’s commitment to creating a comprehensive state mental health system, the Governor supported and signed Senate Bill 1, which provides health insurance parity for mental health and addiction services in the private sector comparable to coverage provided for physical health care. The Governor also committed to moving forward with Phase II and Phase III for the redesign of the Oregon State Hospital, and secured funding for the continued construction and operation of more community-based mental health facilities throughout the state.

Posted on October 1, 2005
Health Care