U. S. Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius

U. S. Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius

One year ago today, President Obama signed into law sweeping changes to the nation’s health care system. The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act re-organized a sector that accounts for one-sixth of the national economy. Some of its more popular elements have already kicked in. Insurance companies can no longer deny coverage to children with pre-existing conditions. And some preventative treatments are now free. But the law faces threats. In a mostly symbolic vote, the GOP-controlled House voted to repeal the Act as one of its first actions. And portions of it could be overturned by the Supreme Court. Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius on the health care overhaul law.

One year ago today, President Obama signed into law sweeping changes to the nation’s health care system. The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act re-organized a sector that accounts for one-sixth of the national economy. Some of its more popular elements have already kicked in. Insurance companies can no longer deny coverage to children with pre-existing conditions. And some preventative treatments are now free. But the law faces threats. In a mostly symbolic vote, the GOP-controlled House voted to repeal the Act as one of its first actions. And portions of it could be overturned by the Supreme Court. Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius on the health care overhaul law.

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Kathleen Sebelius

secretary,Department of Health and Human Services (HHS)

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Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius responds to a caller in Nantucket, Massachusetts - a small-business owner who is paying $1,600 per month for health insurance coverage for her family of three, with a $5,000 deductible due to her son's pre-existing condition. "At this point, unfortunately, there aren't a lot of new provisions available," Sebelius said. "Right now, as a taxpayer, the family from Nantucket is also paying for everyone who doesn't have insurance who is coming through emergency room doors accessing the health care system, often in a very expensive way," Sebelius said. The Secretary added that more insurance options for small business owners will be available in 2014 as the health-care exchange system expands:

Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius responds to a caller who objects to the part of the health care reform law that requires individuals to purchase health care. The caller argues that she and her family are in good health and don't utilize the health care system enough to warrant having to pay for insurance cost:

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