A grilling on the Hill over Obamacare

Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius speaks about the recent Supreme Court decision to uphold the Affordable Care Act on July 11, 2012 in Washington, DC.

Kathleen Sebelius, the Secretary of Health and Human Services, spent three uncomfortable hours on Capitol Hill today. She was grilled over the well-documented problems with the Healthcare.Gov website and why some people’s policies have been canceled.

Sarah Kliff is the health policy reporter for the Washington Post. She suggests the President probably shouldn’t have promised that if you like your health insurance, you’d get to keep it.

“These cancellations – they’re not a bug of the Affordable Care Act. They’re actually a key feature,” Kliff says. She adds that these policies probably didn’t cover certain things now deemed essential like prescriptions or pregnancy or mental health care. She says the insurance companies were basically told, “you can’t offer these policies that don’t cover these benefits we think are essential."

Kliff dismisses the idea that Sebelius would be forced to resign over this. She says confirming a replacement would probably be too difficult in the current political climate.

About the author

Kai Ryssdal is the host and senior editor of Marketplace, public radio’s program on business and the economy.

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