U-T San Diego: Health care agency passes $1 trillion milestone

By RICARDO ALONSO-ZALDIVAR Associated Press 
FILE - In this Dec. 11, 2013, file photo, Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius testifies on Capitol Hill in Washington. President Barack Obama’s budget pushes the HHS budget over $1 trillion for the first time, reflecting an aging population adding to the Medicare rolls, as well as expanded coverage for younger people through the new health law. HHS runs Medicare, Medicaid and the insurance expansion in Obama's health overhaul law, which together provide coverage for about 1 in 3 Americans. Its growing prominence in the federal budget reflects the rise of benefit programs, which now account for more than two-thirds of all government spending. (AP Photo/Susan Walsh, File)
FILE – In this Dec. 11, 2013, file photo, Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius testifies on Capitol Hill in Washington. President Barack Obama’s budget pushes the HHS budget over $1 trillion for the first time, reflecting an aging population adding to the Medicare rolls, as well as expanded coverage for younger people through the new health law. HHS runs Medicare, Medicaid and the insurance expansion in Obama’s health overhaul law, which together provide coverage for about 1 in 3 Americans. Its growing prominence in the federal budget reflects the rise of benefit programs, which now account for more than two-thirds of all government spending. (AP Photo/Susan Walsh, File) The Associated Press

WASHINGTON (AP) — President Barack Obama’s budget pushes Health and Human Services spending over $1 trillion for the first time, reflecting an aging population adding to the Medicare rolls, as well as expanded coverage for younger people through the new health law.

Released Tuesday, the HHS budget for the 2015 fiscal year calls for just over $1 trillion, which budget officials said is a new milestone for the department.

HHS runs Medicare, Medicaid and the insurance expansion in Obama’s health overhaul law, which together provide coverage for about 1 in 3 Americans. Its growing prominence in the federal budget reflects the rise of benefit programs, which now account for more than two-thirds of all government spending.

And the trillion-dollar HHS budget left out a significant chunk of spending: another $60 billion for tax credits to finance private coverage under the health care law was included in the Treasury Department’s budget, since those benefits are delivered through the Internal Revenue Service.

Continue reading here: http://www.utsandiego.com/news/2014/mar/04/health-care-agency-passes-1-trillion-milestone/

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