Today, Rep. Phil Roe, M.D. (TN) sent the following letter to Speaker Boehner urging him to repeal the IPAB as part of the fiscal cliff negotiations:
"As you continue negotiations to avoid the fiscal cliff, I ask that you include repeal of the Independent Payment Advisory Board (IPAB) among any entitlement reforms you propose to President Obama. With the IPAB process set to begin on April 30, 2013, now is the time to eliminate one of the worst excesses of the Affordable Care Act (ACA).
"The IPAB--an unelected, unaccountable bureaucracy created by the ACA--has sweeping powers to reduce the growth of Medicare spending. Its proposals will be considered using "fast track" procedures and--absent a three-fifths vote of the Senate--Congress can only modify the type of cuts proposed, not the amount. Should Congress fail to act on the board's recommendations, they automatically go into effect. To make matters worse, the IPAB is exempt from administrative or judicial review.
"There is already strong bipartisan support for repeal of IPAB--H.R. 452, the Medicare Decisions Accountability Act, has 234 cosponsors, including 20 Democrats. In addition, a broad coalition of groups from the medical and business communities support repeal.
"I urge you to take up repeal of IPAB with the president so that we can protect America's seniors and the doctor-patient relationship."