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Obama: 7 Million Sign Up for Health Care Coverage

  • VOA News

President Barack Obama, accompanied by Vice President Joe Biden speaks about the Affordable Care Act, April 1, 2014, in the Rose Garden of the White House.

President Barack Obama, accompanied by Vice President Joe Biden speaks about the Affordable Care Act, April 1, 2014, in the Rose Garden of the White House.

U.S. President Barack Obama says 7.1 million Americans have signed up for health insurance plans under the Affordable Care Act, popularly known as Obamacare.

In a Rose Garden speech Tuesday, Obama celebrated the better-than-expected enrollment saying, the health care reform initiative "is here to stay.''

On Monday, the final day for Americans to sign up on the federal exchanges, more than 4.8 million visits were made to HealthCare.gov and 2 million calls were made to the call center.

The president's remarks amounted to a victory for an administration that botched the start of the long-planned launch.

The enrollment website was riddled with technical problems, and a flurry of private policy cancellations forced Obama to recant his pledge that Americans who liked their health insurance plans could keep them.

Although the Congressional Budget Office had originally estimated that 7 million people would enroll in the health exchanges this year, it lowered those expectations to 6 million due to the website problems.

The enrollment number does not include those who signed up on Monday in the 14 states that run their own insurance exchanges. Nor does it include people who were unable to complete applications in time.

The Kaiser Family Foundation estimates 47 million Americans are without health insurance.
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