"While the Affordable Care Act is not perfect, it is a great step toward the healthcare system all Americans deserve. To make the coverage provisions of the law readily available we need to focus now on enrollment, educating the public, signing people up, learning what we as hospitals can to do contribute," Keehan said.
"No matter who does the study, 75% to 85% of the people that this Act is supposed to help in this open enrollment believe there is nothing in the Act for them and that is largely because of massive misinformation. A good number of people don't even believe the Affordable Care Act is still the law and that it offers assistance and helps them pay for coverage."
The CHA leader also sought to tamp down the apocalyptic predictions of ACA critics.
"Try to have a historical perspective," Keehan said. "Look at the beginnings of our Medicare program. There were lots and lots of ups and downs in that and today not having the Medicare program is unthinkable. There will be bumps in the road, unintended consequences, things we didn't think of. But they are all worth getting beyond. We have the talent and commitment at CMS and (Health and Human Services) and in the Administration and Congress and get beyond them and give us a healthcare system that is worthy of our nation."