Sebelius: Reform repeal would be 'devastating'

While the U.S. House of Representatives today votes on whether to repeal the health reform law, federal health officials are protesting such a move.

In fact, U.S. Health & Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius said that abolishing the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act would be disastrous, HealthLeaders Media reported.

"[T]he House of Representatives is preparing to hold another vote--their 31st vote--on repealing the Affordable Care Act. For millions of seniors and people with disabilities who have seen the impact of these benefits in their own lives, the consequences of repeal would be devastating," Sebelius said in a press briefing.

Despite concerns, Sebelius is hopeful that states will utilize the "unusually generous federal resources" under the ACA to ease the burden uncompensated care puts on providers, she wrote yesterday in a letter to governors.

Sebelius' recent statements echo her stance last year, when she called repealing health reform a "huge step backward." Scrapping the legislation would not only deny coverage to 32 million Americans but also add a trillion to the deficit in the next 10 years, she said.

Amid the opposition from top health officials, Congressional Republicans are setting their sights on repealing, not replacing, the legislation, the Los Angeles Times reported. According to senior Republicans, a replacement plan might not surface for at least another year.

For more:
- here's the HealthLeaders article
- read Sebelius' letter (.pdf)
- read the LA Times article

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