In a joint session of the U.S. Congress on February 24, President Barack Obama said his budget plan for the 2010 fiscal year to be released this week would include a “down payment on the principle that we must have quality, affordable health care for every American,” Reuters reports.

According to the article, Obama said money from the $787 billion economic stimulus package approved by Congress would be used to fund cancer research and to computerize health records.

“Health care reform cannot wait, it must not wait, and it will not wait another year,” he said. “This budget builds on these reforms. It includes an historic commitment to comprehensive health care reform.”

Obama promised that he will work to extend health insurance to many of the 46 million Americans currently living without it. His budget plan due on February 26 will lay out a timeline for this initiative.