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IPAB Repeal Arguments Weak, For Now

Philip Betbeze, for HealthLeaders Media, March 8, 2013

But that doesn't mean Congress should necessarily listen to them any more than any other lobbyist group that is trying to prevent its ox from being gored. Healthcare spending is likely to devour all federal spending in a couple of decades unless something is done to control its growth, yet even when something like IPAB gets made into a law, Congress tries to kill it before it even exists.

I'm no general defender of the omnibus PPACA, but let's be honest and admit that despite the many changes the law will inflict on the business of healthcare, cost control isn't one of the major ones. In fact, that's the main criticism of the Act. Despite its name, it does very little to make healthcare more affordable.

In fact, IPAB, which was created as a version of the Medicare Payment Advisory Commission (MedPAC) that actually has the teeth to implement its regulations, is perhaps the only piece of the legislation that will actually attempt to hold down medical cost growth. Congress routinely ignores recommendations of MedPAC, so that clearly doesn't work, which is why IPAB was created in the first place.

And yet hospitals, physicians, and many other medical interests are attempting to make it stillborn. Not to worry. They still have lots of time to kill it off, as they will not be subject to IPAB's decisions until 2020!

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2 comments on "IPAB Repeal Arguments Weak, For Now"


bob sigmond (3/9/2013 at 9:59 AM)
Good show, Phil. Frankly, I am surprised at the position of the American Hospital Association. In the past, the AHA frequently reflected the broad public interest vision of so many of its members rather than those with a more narrow perspective. I know that Rich Umdenstock knows better. Right on! Bob

Dr angel (3/8/2013 at 3:05 PM)
Philip, I like your ability to reason. You make a good point because you have a good logic path. However, good logic alone doesnt win a debate. What most of us like is a say...what Im afraid of is that politicians wiil appoint people who are radical, paid off , etc that will protect their interests/agendas. One board with so much power is scary, especially when president has such influence/veto power. Sustem with checks/balances is needed. You call it gridlock, I call it healthy debate. You call it nothing done/passed, I call it not lnee jerking a reaction. No doctors/specialists are having mich say in reform. Its special interest thinktank study groups paid by insurance companies and a president who have aligned to give us socialized medicine. The fact is Rationing has to occur, because we have more patients/conditions than we have resources. Everyone in charge wants to blame waste/fraud/doing it wrong as athe problem. The problem is that rationing has to occur. IPAB may be wgat rations care. Id rather it be with more input by docs, nurses, patients, clergy, scientists. Appointed politician puppets is not a great answer. Rationing care....get used to it, calling it better care at lower cost is a dishonest representation. Ask a doctor from Poland, or England...I have!