KHN Morning Briefing

Summaries of health policy coverage from major news organizations.

Sebelius Gets ‘Full Confidence’ From Obama Despite Shaky Exchange Rollout

Amid a Republicans chorus calling for her to be fired, Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius got the "full confidence" of President Barack Obama Tuesday.

Politico: Obama Has 'Full Confidence' In Sebelius
President Obama has "full confidence" in Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius despite the bumpy rollout of HealthCare.gov, the White House said Tuesday. "The secretary does have the full confidence of the president," press secretary Jay Carney told reporters, responding to a question about the "Fire Sebelius" movement that's cropped up among Republicans (Epstein, 10/15).

Reuters: Obama Backs Health Secretary Sebelius Despite 'Obamacare' Woes
President Barack Obama has "full confidence" in Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius despite the troubled launch of the U.S. government website for signing up for his signature health care insurance program, the White House said on Tuesday. Americans trying to shop for health insurance at healthcare.gov under Obama's health care law have been frustrated by error messages, long waits and system failures, with many failing to make it through the system despite repeated tries (Rampton, 10/15).

CBS News: Former WH Official, Republicans Slam HHS For Flawed Obamacare Rollout
In the wake of the botched rollout of the online Obamacare marketplace, some Republicans are saying it's time for Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius to go. At least one former Obama administration official agrees that someone, if not Sebelius, should get fired for the problems with HealthCare.gov. Health and Human Services spent almost $394 million over three years in contracts, according to one government report, to build the online marketplace (referred to as an exchange) on which consumers in 36 states can shop for private insurance. A couple congressional Republicans have also called for Sebelius' replacement. "For the sake of the American health care system, as well as jobs and the economy, Obamacare should be repealed," Rep. John Fleming, R-La., said in a statement Monday. "In the meantime, someone must be held accountable for wasting taxpayer dollars on a rollout that was more than three years in the making” (Condon, 10/15).

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