House Republican Policy Committee Chairman Tom Price, M.D. (R-GA) issued the following statement as the House Committee on Ways and Means Health Subcommittee held a hearing on the Independent Payment Advisory Board (IPAB) -- an unelected board of 15 individuals created and empowered by the president's health care reform law.
"The new health care law gives a board of fifteen unelected, unaccountable bureaucrats an incredible and disturbing level of decision-making authority over the quality and accessibility of health care for America's seniors," said Chairman Price. "The Independent Payment Advisory Board would have the power to determine what to pay doctors to provide treatments and services under Medicare. Denial of payment for care would ultimately lead to the denial of care for our seniors. That is an unacceptable vision for the future of Medicare.
"The law claims to prohibit IPAB from rationing care, but those who crafted the legislation conveniently failed to define what rationing would entail leaving that up to the board itself or some other government bureaucrat. Whether you call it rationing care, seniors will certainly recognize they are being denied the care they and their physician have chosen for them if this board determines it is not in the government's best interest to pay doctors for it. House Republicans would prefer Washington not put seniors in a position of seeing their access to quality, affordable care compromised either by a board of unelected bureaucrats under IPAB or a Medicare system that grows less and less financially sustainable each and every day.
"House Republicans have offered a different vision for Medicare's future that will guarantee coverage for seniors. IPAB threatens the integrity of our health and retirement security system by putting bureaucrats in between patients and their doctors. This board is emblematic of the Washington-knows-best policies imposed by the current administration, and we ought to get rid of it and move toward providing seniors greater choices and greater control over their health care decisions."