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Friday April 18th 2014

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Covered California’s Executive Director Faces Fiery Test

PeterLeeHis grandfather helped start the Palo Alto Medical Clinic in 1930, when the idea of a physicians’ group was so revolutionary that critics called it anti-competitive, even “communist.” And decades later, the Johnson administration recruited his uncle to help roll out Medicare, prompting new attacks from fellow doctors opposed to any slide into “socialized medicine.” Now, Peter V. Lee, as executive director of Covered California, the state’s new health exchange, has the daunting task of executing a key part of the new federal health care law in the nation’s most populous state. And if the law succeeds here, many health care experts agree, it will likely succeed in other states.  Lee admitted that the exchange’s website doesn’t have “all of its kinks ironed out,” in a recent interview with the San Jose Mercury News.