Sebelius said to resign


April 10, 2014 • Reprints                                                               

HHS Kathleen Sebelius (AP photo/J. Scott Applewhite)
HHS Kathleen Sebelius (AP photo/J. Scott Applewhite)

(Bloomberg) — Kathleen Sebelius, the U.S. Health and Human Services (HHS) secretary who steered the rollout of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA), will resign just as the PPACA exchange plan program has topped the Congressional Budget Office first-year enrollment goal for the program, according to two people familiar with the decision.

The resignation of Sebelius, 65, is expected to be announced tomorrow, said the people who asked not to be identified because the decision is still private.

Sylvia Mathews Burwell, 48, director of the Office of Management and Budget, will be nominated to succeed Sebelius, one of the people said.

White House officials had no immediate comment on the report.

A former Democratic governor of Kansas, former Kansas insurance commissioner and former National Association of Insurance Commissioners president, Sebelius was an early backer of Obama’s campaign for the president. She spent five years running the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, presiding over the largest change to government health programs since Medicare and Medicaid began almost 50 years ago.

Sebelius’s departure was unexpected by at least one person close to her, Kansas Insurance Commissioner Sandy Praeger, a Republican who has worked with her since 1991. Praeger said she was at a dinner where the health secretary spoke last week and that “she seemed like she was in it for the long haul.”