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Obamacare takes full effect today


Today President Obama's health care law takes full effect nationwide. But the implementation is not without controversy.

Nearly four years after President Obama signed his controversial health care bill into law.The whole thing finally goes into effect.

"And is a new day in health care for millions of Americans," said Secretary of HHS Kathleen Sebelius.

There have been major technical glitchesand delays. But starting today millions more Americans will now be able to get health care coverage. The Obama administration said that more than 2.1 million people have signed up since October 1 for plans that go into effect today.

"The health insurance plans offered through the market place are quality comprehensive private plans," Sebelius said.

Health insurance companies can no longer deny coverage to people with pre-existing conditions.

"They're also no longer allowed to put a lifetime cap on the dollar amount they pay out."

Also starting today, every health insurance plan sold in the U.S. must cover essentials such as doctor visits and prescription drugs.

Last night Supreme Court Justice Sonia Sotomayor kicked off 2014 in Times Square. But just hours before that, she temporarily blocked an Obamacare requirement about birth control at the request of an organization of Catholic nuns - The Little Sisters of the Poor.

The requirement forces some religious groups to provide contraception in their health care plans - but the Obama administration already set up an out for churches and other religious groups, where the insurance companies would pay that part of the coverage.

Today the White House insisted the health care plan used by the Little Sisters of the Poor is not even subject to the contraception rules, because of those exemptions.