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Sebelius announces resignation amidst ACA, ICD-10 and SGR challenges

Following Healthcare.gov glitches, Sebelius resigns after 7.5 million enroll in ACA


Shortly after announcing the enrollment of 7.5 million people in the Affordable Care Act (ACA) health insurance exchanges, Kathleen Sebelius resigned as secretary of the of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS). Her departure leaves many unanswered questions for the Obama administration and about the future of the ACA and other healthcare challenges.

“I knew it wouldn’t be easy,” Sebelius said about the rollout of ACA at a press conference Friday announcing her resignation. “The Affordable Care Act is the most significant social change this country has seen in 50 years.”

Sebelius, 65, served President Barack Obama’s administration for five years, and led the rollout the ACA exchanges in October 2013. The website hosting the healthcare exchanges, Healthcare.gov, faced troubles from the beginning. It was virtually unworkable for weeks, after being flooded with people attempting to sign up for coverage.

Sebelius faced both House and Senate hearings because of the faulty rollout of the healthcare exchanges. In the months leading up to the March 31 enrollment deadline, she joined Obama and other administration officials in touring the country and courting media to encourage people to sign up for insurance.  

A surge of enrollees in March helped the administration exceed its enrollment goal, and a confident Sebelius even told The Huffington Post that she would remain secretary until next November to continue working on the ACA.

“This is the most satisfying work I’ve ever done,” Sebelius told The Huffington Post on March 31.

Obama is nominating Sylvia Mathews Burwell, current director of the Office of Management and Budget to replace Sebelius. As HHS faces continued battles over ACA and the push for Medicaid expansion, new challenges from the recent ICD-10 delay and Medicare’s SGR patch also await.

Medicare’s payment data dump to physicians raises serious concerns about the accuracy and the ease in which payment data can be misinterpreted, according to the American Medical Association and the American College of Physicians.

Implementation costs, alert fatigue cited as obstacles for practices

Fear of litigation is driving up the cost of healthcare, and it should be the catalyst to fix a broken medical liability system, according to a position paper released by the American College of Physicians during its annual meeting in Orlando.

During a keynote address at the American College of Physicians Internal Medicine 2014 conference in Orlando, Florida, Elisabeth Rosenthal, MD, a healthcare reporter for the New York Times, discussed healthcare costs and their burden on patients.

Patients with private insurance have a better chance of scheduling appointments with doctors than those with Medicaid, according to a new study.


Dr. stef
Mission accomplished? She should have resigned long time ago, saving much scarce tax dollars. Democrats are celebrating much too early. The number goal has been reached, or has it? Wonder how many of those signed up really are insured. Perhaps law suits that may follow may tell the rest of the story. Additionally, how many that are insured are those that will significantly contribute and how many would need to be subsidized by the tax-payers. Amount of money President has spent on promoting his goods would have been better spent by paying for the goods and give them away for free, paid in full.
Apr 14, 2014