AACU News & Notes

Repeal IPAB, Preserve Patient Access to Care

posted: March 1, 2017

We're at the Forefront of the Effort to Repeal IPAB and Preserve Patient Access to Care

Recently, the American Association of Clinical Urologists joined more than 650 organizations, representing healthcare stakeholders from all 50 states, to urge Congress to repeal the Independent Payment Advisory Board (IPAB).

Established by the Affordable Care Act as a tool to reduce Medicare spending, IPAB is a board of presidential appointees charged with making recommendations for cutting Medicare expenditures once the program’s spending growth reaches an arbitrary level. Experts say that this threshold will be met in 2017 and IPAB will go into effect — posing an imminent threat to healthcare access for the nation’s 55 million Medicare beneficiaries. IPAB-recommended cuts become law unless they are overturned by a supermajority in Congress.

As designed, IPAB is a blunt instrument that will not add value to the Medicare program, but rather will focus on reducing what Medicare pays for healthcare services and treatments. Providers are already reimbursed less by Medicare than they are by private health insurance, and IPAB could drive these payments down further, affecting the ability of physicians to treat a growing population of Medicare beneficiaries. IPAB also threats to shift more health costs to consumers and employers.

There is wide bipartisan support in Congress to eliminate IPAB, but repeal needs to take place immediately before it can be triggered into action. Hearing the voices of constituents who oppose IPAB will help speed up the process of eliminating it. This is why we urge you to get in contact with your Representatives and Senators to urge them to repeal IPAB now.

We all agree that Congress must pursue alternative approaches that achieve cost-efficiency while improving care quality. These efforts must be evidence-based and made in the best interest of the doctor-patient relationship.

IPAB will neither strengthen Medicare nor meet the needs of the more than 55 million Americans who depend on the program for their health and well-being. It must be repealed.

More information, including a full list of our partners in this effort, can be found at the Protect My Doctor and Me website: www.protectmydoctorandme.com. Also join the discussion on Twitter at @MyDrAndMe

Legislative Priorities
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  • Repeal the Independent Payment Advisory Board

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State Advocacy
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  • Medical Liability Reform — Expert Witness Qualifications

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  • Prostate Cancer Awareness & Assessment

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  • Uniform Prior Authorization for Prescriptions and Health Services

    Where We Stand Prior authorizations cost the health system $728 million in 2012. Prior authorization requests must use a single form, no more than two pages in length. Forms must available for both access and submission electronically. Requests are deemed approved if no response is...

  • Work Force — Scope of Practice

    Where We Stand Allow the maximum patient-to-physician ratio to increase based on the number of physician assistants in a practice. Expand the ability of nurse practitioners and physician assistants to supervise medical assistants when doctors aren’t on the premises.Proactive Physician...

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