WASHINGTON, D.C. — Former President Barack Obama returned to the White House on Tuesday to savor his signature Affordable Care Act.
“It is good to be back in the White House," Obama said. "It’s been a while. I confess I heard some changes have been made by the current president since I was last here.”
The Affordable Care Act is now part of the fabric of the American health care system and President Joe Biden is looking to extend its reach.
"What the Affordable Care Act shows is that if you are driven by that core idea that together we can improve the lives of this generation and the next," Obama said. "And if you're persistent, if you stay with it, and are willing to work through the obstacles and the criticism, and continually improve where you fall short, you can make America better."
Sign-ups have increased under Biden’s stewardship, and more generous taxpayer subsidies have cut costs for enrollees.
Now after 12 years since the law's enactment, President Biden signed an executive order Tuesday that expands the ACA, including giving more families access to subsidies.
Currently, workers who do not have affordable health insurance options through their employer or job can qualify for subsidized coverage on the ACA exchange.
The executive order directs federal agencies to make it easier for people to enroll in health insurance, protect families from low-quality coverage and lower costs for families with ACA, Medicare or Medicaid, among other directives.