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In Visit to Indiana, Sebelius Announces Hospital Stimulus Funding

Indiana is one of 20 states to join a suit filed against the federal government that alleges new health insurance laws are unconstitutional. But U.S. Health and Human Services Secretary, Kathleen Sebelius, said that claim is unfounded.

“I am confident talking to our lawyers and the legal team at the justice department that this bill stands on solid financial, I mean solid constitutional grounds, as well as solid financial grounds—it’s paid for,” Sebelius said.

Sebelius first stopped in Bloomington Friday with 9th District Congressman Baron Hill, who said he agrees with the secretary’s statement. He said provisions in the law restructuring Medicare won’t cost Indiana any money for the first few years of its implementation, with the possibility of a 10 percent additional cost starting in 2020.

“The governor is out making claims that this is going to bankrupt their program and it’s not. He shouldn’t be doing what he’s doing. He’s scaring people,” Hill said. “And I think he’s doing it because he feels like he’s so opposed to the healthcare bill, but this is going to have a positive effect on Indiana not a negative effect.”

Sebelius said currently 75 cents of every health care dollar spent goes toward the treatment of chronic illnesses with only about eight cents being spent on prevention. She said she’s working as HHS secretary to reverse that trend.

Sebelius continued her tour of the Hoosier State in Indianapolis where she announced Indiana University would be receiving about $8.5 million from the federal stimulus package, to renovate a floor of the Clarian Hospital to provide a more up-to-date facility for juvenile clinical research.

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