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FOLSOM, CA - Michelle Morgan is one of thousands, if not millions, of Californians who are already benefitting from the Affordable Care Act.

Her 4 and 1/2 year old son has asthma and a private insurer has already denied him coverage because of his pre-existing condition.

The mother of three hopes she will never be put in that position again because federal health care reform forces insurers to stop denying coverage to sick kids.

"It is peace of mind," said Morgan. "We would have options. We could call Kaiser or Blue Shield and we would fill out an application ... and not have to stress."

Among the other changes, more than 350,000 young adults can now be on their parents health insurance until the age of 26. And nearly the same number of seniors got significant help with prescription drugs.

Despite the fight over the constitutionality of the Affordable Care Act at the U.S. Supreme Court, California is moving full-steam ahead to implement a crucial part called the Health Benefit Exchange where millions of uninsured residents could buy insurance beginning in 2014.

Health care and state leaders discussed the changes still to come and believe the state can get there ... putting California at the forefront.

"Millions of Californians who have been uninsured will be able to have the security of knowing when they get ill or injured, they will have somewhere to go and they will not go to bankruptcy as a result," said Diana Dooley, California Health and Muan Services Secretary.

Assem. Tim Donnelly, R-Twin Peaks, who has a bill to nullify the federal health care reform in California, says leaders should wait until the justices rule on the constitutionality.

"They're a little Pinto in front of the snow plow," said Donnelly. "They're on dangerous road and they have no business being there."

Nannette Miranda
ABC7

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