IPAB Opponents Eye Malpractice Lawsuit Curbs To Pay For Repeal
This idea has drawn support for some GOP lawmakers seeking to get rid of the Independent Payment Advisory Board, but trial lawyers are already lining up against it. Meanwhile, a new Congressional Budget Office estimate indicates that because Medicare spending is slowing, the board may never actually have to spring into action.
Politico Pro: CBO Score On IPAB Is $3 Billion Bet Hedge
The Congressional Budget Office's estimate that repealing IPAB would cost $3.1 billion has people on the Hill scratching their heads even more than they usually do on a CBO health spending score. On one hand, the CBO is looking at Medicare spending trends and seeing signs that growth is truly slowing. Not a recession-linked short-term blip, but a trend. And that means that the Independent Payment Advisory Board — which was designed as a backstop to curb spending if needed — probably won't have to recommend payment changes until at least 2022 (DoBias, 3/13).
CQ HealthBeat: House GOP Weighs Curbs On Malpractice Suits To Offset IPAB Repeal Cost
House Republicans are planning to use an amended measure to restrict medical malpractice lawsuits as a way to offset the cost of abolishing a board created by the 2010 health care law to restrain Medicare spending, according to a GOP leadership aide. A bill to scrap the Independent Payment Advisory Board (IPAB) is expected to reach the House floor during the week of March 19, when the chamber returns from its current recess. The Congressional Budget Office estimates that the legislation would increase federal direct spending by $3.1 billion over 10 years (Attias and Ethridge, 3/12).
The Hill: Health Law Board Repeal Bill Raises Concerns With Trial Lawyers
The powerful trial lawyers' lobby has come out in force against a bill to repeal the healthcare reform law's cost-cutting board because of the way it's paid for, possibly depriving House Republicans of a unique chance to deal a bipartisan blow to President Obama ahead of the November election. To pay for their repeal of the Independent Payment Advisory Board (IPAB), House leaders have proposed coupling it with legislation capping medical malpractice damages when it comes up for a vote next week. Tort reform has long been a Republican priority, but linking the two bills is likely to cause a number of defections among the 20 Democratic co-sponsors of IPAB repeal while diluting the GOP's message about the unelected board's lack of accountability (Pecquet, 3/12).
The Hill: Dems Targeted Over Support For Health Care Law's 'Rationing Board'
The conservative seniors' lobby 60 Plus launched a $3.5 million ad campaign on Monday targeting five vulnerable Senate Democrats over their support for the healthcare reform law's cost-control board. The TV and Internet ads call on viewers to contact the senators and urge them to repeal the Independent Payment Advisory Board, which the House is scheduled to vote on next week. The ads target Sens. Bill Nelson (D-Fla.), Debbie Stabenow (D-Mich.), Sherrod Brown (D-Ohio), Jon Tester (D-Mont.) and Claire McCaskill (D-Mo.) (Pecquet, 3/12).