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IPAB Repeal Arguments Weak, For Now

Philip Betbeze, for HealthLeaders Media, March 8, 2013

The Independent Payment Advisory Board, a creation of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, has lots of enemies, even though it doesn't really exist yet.

The American Medical Association is against it, and so is the American Hospital Association according to a letter released just last week. Lots of people in Congress, despite the fact that as a group, they're responsible for the fact that it became part of the law, are also against it.

They've introduced at least three bills since the beginning of the year to try to repeal it. Almost laughably, the AHA's recent letter to Sen. John Cornyn (R-TX), says it supports repeal (he's filed a repeal bill) because IPAB "permanently removes Congress from the process of making decisions regarding Medicare payment."

Ask supporters of the sustainable growth rate formula (if you can find any) if that statute ever "permanently removed" Congress from meddling in Medicare payment decisions. That formula, voted into law with the Balanced Budget Act of 1997, has been delayed by, guess who—Congress—umpteen times since 2002.

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2 comments on "IPAB Repeal Arguments Weak, For Now"


bob sigmond (3/9/2013 at 9:59 AM)
Good show, Phil. Frankly, I am surprised at the position of the American Hospital Association. In the past, the AHA frequently reflected the broad public interest vision of so many of its members rather than those with a more narrow perspective. I know that Rich Umdenstock knows better. Right on! Bob

Dr angel (3/8/2013 at 3:05 PM)
Philip, I like your ability to reason. You make a good point because you have a good logic path. However, good logic alone doesnt win a debate. What most of us like is a say...what Im afraid of is that politicians wiil appoint people who are radical, paid off , etc that will protect their interests/agendas. One board with so much power is scary, especially when president has such influence/veto power. Sustem with checks/balances is needed. You call it gridlock, I call it healthy debate. You call it nothing done/passed, I call it not lnee jerking a reaction. No doctors/specialists are having mich say in reform. Its special interest thinktank study groups paid by insurance companies and a president who have aligned to give us socialized medicine. The fact is Rationing has to occur, because we have more patients/conditions than we have resources. Everyone in charge wants to blame waste/fraud/doing it wrong as athe problem. The problem is that rationing has to occur. IPAB may be wgat rations care. Id rather it be with more input by docs, nurses, patients, clergy, scientists. Appointed politician puppets is not a great answer. Rationing care....get used to it, calling it better care at lower cost is a dishonest representation. Ask a doctor from Poland, or England...I have!