HHS nominee Sebelius emphasizes need for long-term care

Share this content:
HHS Secretary Kathleen Sebelius
HHS Secretary Kathleen Sebelius
Kansas Governor Kathleen Sebelius (D), nominee for secretary of the Department of Health and Human Services, told the Senate Finance Committee about the importance of long-term care during the opening statements of her confirmation hearing this week.

"I will strengthen [Medicare, Medicaid and the Children's Health Insurance Program's] roles in protecting Americans with the highest costs and lowest incomes," Sebelius told the Finance Committee. "This includes ensuring that individuals with disabilities receive care that is high-quality and adaptable to their needs. And it includes improving their performance in providing long-term care, which is so critical to so many Americans."

In a statement released March 31, Sen. Max Baucus (D-MT), who chairs the Senate Finance Committee, said that, despite some tax issues, Sebelius is the "right person for the job." Sebelius and her husband recently paid roughly $7,000 in back taxes owed the federal government due to accounting errors in their 2005, 2006 and 2007 tax returns. Much larger tax issues plagued President Obama's first pick for the HHS top spot. Former Sen. Tom Daschle's (D-SD) nomination was derailed over $140,000 in unpaid taxes.