How well do you know your Secretary of Health and Human Services? That's the big question posed by a quiz today on Politico. Secretary Kathleen Sebelius, who, according to the quiz, is a high school jock with a soft spot for the Rolling Stones, has been in the news recently about growing concerns around the lagging implementation of the Affordable Care Act.
On Here and Now last week, WBUR's Meghna Chakrabarti asked Sebelius about glitches in rolling out the national health law. The HHS secretary also responded to criticism that she's been involved in the collection of funds from private sources — like health care and insurance providers — via the not-for-profit organization Enroll America.
Sebelius had this to say:
“Enroll America is not a creation of mine. I have been participating in an effort to both let people know that they exist, because they’re going to be doing some important work in states across the country, particularly researching into communities where people may not know a lot about the law. We see them as great partners in this effort to make sure all Americans have an opportunity to enroll in affordable available health insurance.”
The general public’s cluelessness about the true impacts of the new health law has been an ongoing challenge for the Obama administration. Even so, Sebelius said she's feeling optimistic about a looming October 1 rollout deadline:
“I’m very confident that we will be successful in not only having marketplaces in every state around the country starting October 1st so people can make choices for themselves and their families. We’re working very closely with governors around the country to make sure that in as many states as possible governors, take advantage of the federal formula to expand their Medicaid program and have a large portion of the new cost paid for by the federal government.”
This program aired on June 3, 2013. The audio for this program is not available.