OLSON VOTES TO GIVE SENIORS CONTROL OF THEIR MEDICARE3/22/12
Washington, DC- Rep. Pete Olson (R-Sugar Land) today voted to repeal a controversial provision in the President's healthcare law, Obamacare. The law created the Independent Payment Advisory Board (IPAB), a panel of 15 unelected government bureaucrats tasked with reducing Medicare costs through arbitrary cuts to providers - resulting in de facto rationing of care for seniors. Under the law, the board’s decisions cannot be challenged in the courts – unlike other agency rules – and carry the full force of the law. The bill also includes medical malpractice liability reform similar to what was implemented in Texas, which will help lower healthcare costs.
"IPAB is essentially a Medicare rationing committee whose members have no accountability to the American people," Rep. Olson said. Even Congress and the Supreme Court cannot challenge IPAB decisions under Obamacare. This board threatens seniors’ access to care by cutting Medicare physician reimbursements, causing doctors to drop out of the program. IPAB’s operating budget raids Medicare trust funds, meaning that member salaries are paid by the very people whose benefits they are cutting. Doctors and their patients should determine the level of care - not bureaucrats - that's why I voted to repeal IPAB.
"IPAB takes power from the people and allows bureaucrats to get between patients and their doctors. Seniors don’t need that. Our current system is unsustainable and House Republicans have a long-term plan that preserves benefits for today’s seniors and strengthens Medicare for future beneficiaries. The choice is clear – Republicans’ vision for the future of Medicare is empowering patients; President Obama’s plan is empowering bureaucrats," Olson concluded.
Today’s vote is the 26th time the House has voted to repeal or defund Obamacare since Republicans took the majority in 2011. H.R. 5, the Protecting Access to Healthcare (PATH) Act passed the House by a vote 223-181-4.
Contact: Melissa Kelly