-By Warner Todd Huston
Illinois Congressmen Peter Roskam (6th District), Robert Dold, (10th District), and Randy Hultgren (14th District) discussed this week the end of the Independent Payment Advisory Board (IPAB), a key aspect of Obamacare.
Congressman Dold noted that the IPAB was set up to allow bureaucrats to “come between you and your doctor” and he celebrated its demise.
“I applaud my colleagues for voting to repeal the Independent Payment Advisory Board. This board created in the Affordable Care Act would allow fifteen unelected bureaucrats to decide what procedures are and are not covered under Medicare. I believe this is wrong which is why I voted to repeal it. Nothing is more personal than your health care decisions and I do not believe federal bureaucrats should come between you and your doctor. No one should be subjected to a fifteen person board that has no oversight and no accountability.”
Congressman Hultgren was also satisfied at the end of the unelected agency. Hultgren also noted that there is a better way by announcing his support for the PATH Act (H.R. 5) which is supported by a broad array of organizations, including Easter Seals, the American Medical Association, and the National Right to Life Committee.
“The President’s Independent Payment Advisory Board threatens to ration Medicare for seniors, and get between them and their doctors. In fact, IPAB’s mission contradicted President Obama’s promise that ‘if you like your doctor, you will be able to keep your doctor’, by making it unaffordable for doctors to treat Medicare patients. I’ve heard from countless medical professionals across my district about the threat posed by the unelected and unaccountable bureaucrats of IPAB, so I was pleased to vote to repeal the board. I hope that the Senate follows our lead in a timely manner, to ensure that unaccountable bureaucrats cannot intervene between Medicare recipients and their preferred doctors.
“The PATH Act also cracks down on medical lawsuit abuses, one of the primary drivers of the cost of health care, but which was unaddressed by ObamaCare. As a member of the Illinois General Assembly, I led the fight for lawsuit abuse reform in the state, and I’m proud to continue the fight in Congress.”
Congressman Roskam addressed it all this week. He gave the following remarks on the House Floor in support of legislation to repeal the Independent Payment Advisory Board (IPAB).
“We’re for the repeal IPAB. We’re for the repeal of something that is going to put such downward pressure on seniors, it will make people’s heads spin. What we’ve got to do is make sure we put remedies in place that empower seniors, that create patient-centered healthcare and don’t deny care and put more out of pocket costs on the backs of seniors,” Roskam said on the floor of the House of Representatives.
Thank you Madam Chairman. Mr. Chairman, thank you for yielding. Madam Chairman did you notice something? The gentlemen from Oregon – I took a note and I’m kind of paraphrasing – but he was basically arguing from the other side of the aisle that IPAB, this cost control board, will basically never come into play as long as Congress does its job.
During the healthcare hearing that we had in the Ways and Means Committee, the gentlemen from Wisconsin on the other side of the aisle characterized IPAB as a leap of faith.
Now we just heard from the gentlemen from Texas, who acknowledged it’s not the best solution, but let’s stick with it. Well here’s the problem with sticking with this failed solution Madam Chairman: they’re asking seniors to bear the brunt of this.
We had a witness, an expert witness Madam Chairman who came into the Ways and Means Committee, and I posed this question to him. The bill says there can’t be rationing [per se], but can there be rationing? In other words, if coverage is denied based on cost is that rationing? He said, “Absolutely Congressman.”
So think about what the other side of the aisle is asking. Take a leap of faith, a leap of blind faith that somehow Congress is going to come up with the remedy and that seniors are not going to be held at risk.
The gentlemen from Texas said we’re only here criticizing things, let me tell him Madam Chairman what we are for. We’re for the repeal IPAB. We’re for the repeal of something that is going to put such downward pressure on seniors, it will make people’s heads spin.
What we’ve got to do is make sure we put remedies in place that empower seniors, that create patient-centered healthcare and don’t deny care and put more out of pocket costs on the backs of seniors. We can’t repeal this thing fast enough. We need to vote “aye” and get this thing done. I yield back.