World Bulletin/News Desk
As Washington resumes normal operations, US President Barack Obama Monday returned his focus to his signature healthcare overhaul, urging Americans to sign up.
Standing with some of those who have already benefited from the Affordable Care Act in the White House’s Rose Garden, Obama said, “So here's the bottom line. The product, the health insurance, is good. The prices are good. It is a good deal. People don't just want it; they're showing up to buy it.”
Many of the Act’s provisions will go into effect at the start of 2014.
The launch of the government’s healthcare website, healthcare.gov, has been dogged by technical issues, however, which have prevented many from fully accessing the site. The webpage houses healthcare marketplaces through which many Americans will apply for new coverage.
“Nobody's madder than me about the fact that the website isn't working as well as it should, which means it's going to get fixed,” Obama said to a mixture of laughter and applause. Americans are also able to apply by phone or at local health centers and hospitals.
One of Obama’s key claims for the new health initiative is that it will lower costs for the average consumer.
He added, “So don't let problems with the website deter you from signing up or signing your family up, or showing your friends how to sign up, because it is worth it. It will save you money. If you don't have health insurance, if you've got a pre-existing condition, it will save you money and it will give you the security that your family needs.”
Much of the opposition to the President’s initiative stems from congressional Republicans, who variously claim that the reform package will actually drive prices up, and that it violates American’s constitutional rights. A key component of the Affordable Care Act is an individual mandate, which requires all Americans to purchase healthcare unless they are already covered by an employer or government program.
“I recognize that the Republican Party has made blocking the Affordable Care Act its signature policy idea. Sometimes it seems to be the one thing that unifies the party theses days. In -- in fact, they were willing to shut down the government and potentially harm the global economy to try to get it repealed,” Obama said.
He added, “We waged this battle to make sure that millions of Americans in the wealthiest nation on Earth finally have the same chance to get the same security of affordable quality health care as anybody else. That's what this is about.”
Key for Obama has been increasing coverage across the nation, and prohibiting insurers from denying coverage to patients with pre-existing conditions.
“Our goal has always been to declare that in this country the security of health care is not a privilege for a fortunate few, it's a right for all to enjoy,” Obama said to applause.Last Mod: 22 Ekim 2013, 09:23