(Bloomberg) -- President Barack Obama’s new health secretarysaid the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act isexpanding U.S. insurance coverage and lowering consumers’health-care costs. She declined to predict how well the program’senrollment system will work in November, when consumers begin a newyear of sign-ups.

Taking questions yesterday from reporters for the first time ata White House news conference, HHS Secretary Sylvia Mathews Burwellsaid insurance programs created by the Patient Protectionand Affordable Care Act have reduced the nation’s uninsured population by26 percent. She called the reduction “the most important number” tomeasure the law’s success.

“For those of you covering the private sector, any market thatgrows at that rate in its first year, those results would beconsidered pretty extraordinary,” she said.

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