Representative Doug Cox is set to receive the Public Health Innovator Award on Wednesday, August 31 at the Oklahoma Turning Point Conference and Policy Day in Norman. Oklahoma State Department of Health (OSDH) Commissioner, Dr. Terry Cline will present this award to Cox in regards to his continued efforts to create a better state of health in Oklahoma.
Since being elected to the Oklahoma House of Representatives in 2004, Cox, who is also a physician, has become one of the state’s strongest voices on public health and health care policy. He has worked tirelessly to improve the quality of health care for all Oklahomans, and to create new opportunities for future generations.
“In addition to saving lives as an emergency room physician, Dr. Cox has saved countless lives and improved the quality of life for thousands and thousands more by advocating for legislation and funding to support public health and health care services in Oklahoma. He is a true statesman, champion, protector and advocate for people in the state and I can think of no one more deserving of this recognition than Dr. Doug Cox,” said Dr. Cline.
In his first year in office, Cox helped lead a comprehensive study on how to reform Oklahoma’s Medicaid system. In 2006, he authored legislation creating a workforce center to help the state develop a plan to meet current and future demands for health services. He has also helped to improve the standard of care for the state’s most vulnerable citizens and for children and the elderly.
“Dr. Cox’s effectiveness as a legislator was not solely driven by his professional background or education. His legislative successes were a direct result of the compassion he has for the people of his district and of this state,” said Carter Kimble, director, Office of State and Federal Policy, OSDH.
Even during the legislative session Cox continues to work at the Grove hospital, often working nights and weekends. He juggles the demanding schedule out of his love for medicine and his passion for helping others.
Some of Cox’s Key Policy Achievements in legislature are:
Passing HB 1948 - Prescription Drug Monitoring Program in 2015
Work on Medicaid Reform Task Force
Passage of All Kids Act, expanding health coverage for kids
Authored over 12 different tobacco bills including the cigarette tax bills
Prior to joining the legislature, Cox served as president of the Grove School Board and sat on the board of directors of the Oklahoma State University Alumni Association. He has also served the law enforcement community as a deputy medical examiner.
Cox earned his bachelor’s degree from Oklahoma State University in 1974, and completed his medical degree at the University of Oklahoma in 1978. He then completed his family practice residency at OU’s Tulsa Medical College in 1981.
Cox has reached his maximum term limit and is due to vacate his seat in the coming months. This award and recognition speaks to his concerted efforts with other leaders in the state to create a healthier Oklahoma.