Cost-Cutting Board May Not See The Light Of Day

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Just as the Supreme Court takes up the constitutionality of President Obama's health care reform law later this month, the House of Representatives is expected to vote on repealing a little-known but key part of the law: the Independent Payment Advisory Board, or IPAB.

The Daily Caller reports:

Congressman Phil Roe, Tennessee Republican, told The Daily Caller the IPAB is the “real death panel” in the health care law, as compared to “end-of-life counseling” provisions in Obamacare that former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin once deemed “death panels.”

But the IPAB doesn't yet exist and it will only be created if Medicare costs go beyond a certain trigger point by 2018, at which time it will be charged with cutting costs.

And it's only charged with cutting payments to hospitals-- it's not authorized to cut services to patients.

On Monday, Mitt Romney called it "an unaccountable board with rationing power," a claim which is echoed in an ad from the conservative 60-plus Association, featuring singer Pat Boone.

The Washington Post fact checker gave that ad three "Pinocchios." But Massachusetts Democrat Barney Frank and 19 other House Democrats want to get rid of IPAB too.


  • Sarah Kliff, who covers health policy for the Washington Post

This segment aired on March 16, 2012.


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