Congressman Brett Guthrie voted today, Thursday, March 22, 2012, in favor of H.R. 5, the PATH Act. This legislation consolidates bills to repeal the Independent Payment Advisory Board (IPAB) created under the health care law and to make critical medical liability reform. Congressman Guthrie released the following statement after the vote:
"This bill achieved two essential, commonsense victories for patients. Repealing the IPAB is another step towards keeping decisions about health care in the hands of doctors and patients. The IPAB threatens seniors' access to quality health care by allowing a panel of 15 unelected, unaccountable bureaucrats to operate outside the system of checks and balances. The IPAB has the authority to make coverage decisions which could lead to restricted access to procedures and services for Medicare beneficiaries.
"Medical liability reform is essential. Our current tort system is driving doctors out of medicine. Those who remain are forced to practice defensive medicine, further increasing health care costs. The nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office has estimated that medical liability reform will save taxpayers tens of billions of dollars.
"As a member of the House Energy and Commerce Committee's Health Subcommittee, I will continue to focus on ways we can control costs within the health care system and protect the sacred doctor-patient relationship. We need meaningful solutions that reduce cost and make quality health care more affordable and accessible."