HHS Seeks $600 Million For Health Law Enrollment Efforts

Just in case Congress doesn't pass President Barack Obama's fiscal 2015 budget plan, officials at the Department of Health and Human Services say they have other options for finding the money they need to implement the health care law.

Just in case Congress doesn’t pass President Barack Obama’s fiscal 2015 budget plan, officials at the Department of Health and Human Services say they have other options for finding the money they need to implement the health care law.

Copies of U.S. President Barack Obama's fiscal year 2015 budget are shown for sale at the Government Printing Office in Washington (Photo by Win McNamee/Getty Images).

The law is expected to generate $1.2 billion in user fees—including those on health insurers who participate in its online marketplaces, or exchanges. The administration’s budget requests an additional $600 million to help run the federal marketplace, call centers and other outreach efforts, said Ellen Murray, assistant HHS secretary for financial resources.

If Congress doesn’t agree, she said, the secretary’s office has the authority to transfer funds from existing accounts, or to tap the agency’s non-recurring expense fund, which allows the agency to take money from expired accounts and use it for information technology and other capital investments.

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Source: Kaiser Health News