Sebelius Testifies That Obamacare Is Allowing ‘Young Adults’ to Consider Entrepreneurship

By Penny Starr | January 28, 2011 | 4:00 AM EST

HHS Secretary Kathleen Sebelius told members of a Senate committee on Thursday that Obamacare is helping millions of Americans, including those who are allowed to be on their parent’s health insurance policy until they are 26. ( Starr)

( – Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius told members of a Senate Committee on Thursday that a provision in the new health care law allowing individuals to be included on their parent’s insurance policy until they are 26 is allowing more young people to consider becoming an entrepreneur.

“So this family strategy, I think, goes a long way,” Sebelius told the Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor and Pensions in response to a question from Sen. Kay Hagan (D-N.C.) about how many people are affected by that part of the law.

“I can’t give you exact numbers today,” Sebelius said. “We’d be happy to try and collect those for you. But, I think, clearly this is impacting millions of young adults around the country in a very positive way, and allows those young adults to think about being an entrepreneur or start their own business or strategies that, again, were impeding their ability to really launch into a professional career, if it did not come attached with health insurance.”

After Sebelius's testimony, the committee heard from other witnesses, including two women who told the committee how the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act has helped them deal with the medical challenges they faced.

President Obama signed the Affordable Care Act into law in March 2010. The House, now with a Republican majority, voted (245-189) last week to repeal the legislation on Jan. 19.

“I have personally seen the difference this law will make, and in just a few minutes, you’ll hear more about how the law is making it easier for Americans to get the health care they need,” Sebelius said on Thursday in her prepared remarks.

Sebelius also credited Obamacare with “strengthening our economy.”

“In addition to giving Americans more control over their health care, the new law is strengthening our economy,” she said. “More than 1 million new private sector jobs have been created since the law passed and the health sector is one of the fastest growing parts of our economy.”

Sebelius did not cite the source for the number of jobs she claimed has been created, and members of the committee did not question her about the topic.

Sebelius said the vote by the Republican-controlled House to repeal the health care law was “unfortunate.”

“At a time when there is so much more important work to be done to rebuild our economy, we can’t afford to take these benefits away from families, bring back the worst practices of the insurance industry, raise premiums for families, increase health costs for businesses, and add $1 trillion to the deficit by the end of the next decade,” Sebelius said.