ST. PAUL, Minn. (AP) — The Minnesota Senate has given bipartisan approval to a package of Republican-authored bills aimed at making health care more affordable, accessible and transparent.

The bills included one for greater oversight over pharmacy benefit managers — the middlemen between insurers and patients that are supposed to use their clout to hold down drug expenses. Chief sponsor Sen. Scott Jensen says that system isn't working.

Other bills that passed the Senate by wide margins Thursday include one to let patients enter into direct primary care contracts with doctors, one for more transparency in hospital billing, and one to make it easier for allergy patients who need epi pens to get them in emergencies.

The GOP majority rejected a Democratic amendment to establish Gov. Tim Walz's proposed OneCare public option health care program.