Congressman Adrian Smith (R-NE) today voted for the Medicare Decisions Accountability Act (H.R. 452), which would repeal the Independent Payment Advisory Board (IPAB), during consideration in the House Ways & Means Committee.
IPAB is a fifteen-member panel established by the new health care law which is required to achieve specified savings in years where Medicare spending is deemed "too high." This board would have the power to limit access to medical treatments by reducing reimbursements for disfavored procedures to the point where physicians simply won't provide them. President Obama has proposed expanding IPAB's authority under his Fiscal Year 2013 budget plan.
"This bipartisan legislation will help restore the integrity of our health and retirement security system by removing a major barrier between patients and their doctors," said Smith, who supports full repeal of the President's health care law. "We must reform Medicare to give doctors and patients greater accountability in their decision-making, not rely on arbitrary cuts made by panel of unaccountable bureaucrats. IPAB is a piecemeal approach which will hurt Nebraska seniors without improving Medicare's bottom line."