Access to Medicare Act Would Protect Seniors from Obamacare’s 15 Unelected Bureaucrats

Cortney O'Brien
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Posted: Jun 24, 2015 10:30 AM
Access to Medicare Act Would Protect Seniors from Obamacare’s 15 Unelected Bureaucrats

Obamacare’s Independent Payment Advisory Board is a panel of 15 unelected health care experts chosen by the president who have the authority to cut Medicare spending without congressional approval. This rationing of health coverage, concerned legislators argue, puts seniors at risk as it places bureaucrats in the middle of their cherished doctor-patient relationships.

Rep. Diane Black (R-TN), a nurse, is an original co-sponsor of H.R. 1190, the Protecting Seniors’ Access to Medicare Act of 2015, which would repeal IPAB. On Tuesday she explained why this legislation is a necessary effort to protect seniors.

But under Obamacare’s Independent Payment Advisory Board – or “IPAB” – a panel of 15 unelected bureaucrats would be tasked with cutting Medicare costs in a way that could deny care to seniors who need it most.

Now, I’ve been a nurse for over 40 years, but you don’t need to be a health care professional to understand that there’s nothing fair about that.

Mister Speaker, no senior needs a Washington bureaucrat standing between them and their doctor.

Black also mentioned that the legislation was a bipartisan initiative. A couple of years ago, for instance, even former governor Howard Dean (D-VT) described IPAB as a “major problem” that is based on system that has a “40-year track record of failure.” He also challenged the notion that the program would be cost-effective.

Most important, once again, these kinds of schemes do not control costs. The medical system simply becomes more bureaucratic. The nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office has indicated that the IPAB, in its current form, won't save a single dime before 2021.

The benefits of IPAB appear to be non-existent – and President Obama’s claim that his health care law would be “a new set of rules that treats everyone fairly and honestly,” now seems nothing more than an empty promise.