11/06/2013 10:35 am ET Updated Jan 23, 2014

Obamacare Delay 'Not An Option,' Kathleen Sebelius Says


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WASHINGTON, Nov 6 (Reuters) - President Barack Obama's top healthcare adviser told a Senate oversight committee on Wednesday that delaying the healthcare reform law known as Obamacare is "not an option," despite the troubled rollout of the federal website, HealthCare.gov.

"Delay is not an option. We are still at the beginning of a six-month open enrollment that ends at the end of March, and there's plenty of time to sign up for the new plans," U.S. Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius told the Senate Finance Committee.

Both Democratic and Republican lawmakers have called for an extension of the enrollment period for uninsured people to sign up for subsidized health coverage, worrying that problems with the healthcare website could continue to prevent access to coverage.

Just before Sebelius began her testimony, U.S. health insurer Humana Inc said it expected a delay in the enrollment period for the state-based health exchanges and was waiting to hear from the government on how it would proceed after a rocky start to the federal marketplace. (Reporting by David Morgan; Editing by Vicki Allen)



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