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Health and Human Services Secretary in Detroit

Updated: Friday, November 15, 2013 |
Health and Human Services Secretary in Detroit story image
DETROIT (NEWSCHANNEL 3) - Secretary of Health and Human Services Kathleen Sebelius will highlight the Affordable Care Act in Michigan Friday.

Sebelius will be here in Michigan to teach Detroit residents about the Health Insurance Marketplace.

The visit comes right on the heel of President Obama's announcement that the millions of Americans who lost their health care coverage under Obamacare should be allowed to renew their coverage plans.

"We fumbled the roll out on this health care law," said President Obama. "That's on me."

President Obama is owning up to the issues with the Affordable Care Act and trying to make things better.

He now says Americans can keep their current insurance plans through 2014, even if they don't meet the standards laid out in current law.

"This fix won't solve every problem for every person, but it's going to help a lot of people," said the president.
Nearly five million people received cancellation notices, something the president promised wouldn't happen.

As he works to fix those issues, the Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius is in Michigan, walking Detroit residents though the troubled website.

In Washington, the House is voting on a GOP proposal to permanently let Americans keep their coverage and allow insurance companies to keep selling those plans to new customers.

"I would encourage every member to help keep that promise and vote for this important bill," said Rep. John Boehner.

But, the head of the Insurance Commissioners Association is concerned about reversing course. 

He says the president's "fix" will create even bigger issues. In order to rescind cancellation notices insurance companies have 30 days to:

- Contact the people whose policies were canceled.
- Explain coverage options.
- Get state regulators to sign off on new premiums.
- And process the customers policies.

The president has also vowed to veto the bill if it passes.

The event in Detroit is at 9:45 Friday morning.

In Michigan, more than 1,300 residents selected a health insurance plan in the first month of enrollment. Another 34,000 who applied have been ruled eligible for the exchange and about 12,000 are eligible for tax credits to offset some of their premiums.

The state estimates at least 365,000 people could sign up on the market in 2014.

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The Obama administration achieved a major victory in late June when the Supreme Court ruled 6-3 to uphold the nationwide subsidies for the Affordable Care Act. Open enrollment for 2015 is closed but people with special circumstances can still get covered on healthcare.gov.

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