In 2009, Sarah Palin was sneered at by the so-called “smart” people in Washington for saying the Independent Payment Advisory Board (IPAB) in Obamacare was a death panel. Four years later, Democrats admit she is right:
Dr. Donald Berwick, who headed the Centers for Medicaid and Medicare Services, admitted as much when he opined: “The decision is not whether or not we will ration care — the decision is whether we will ration with our eyes open.”
Berwick also said: “We can make a sensible social decision and say, ‘Well, at this point, to have access to a particular additional benefit (new drug or medical intervention) is so expensive that our taxpayers have better use for those funds.’”
In an op-ed last month in the Wall Street Journal that Palin could have written, Howard Dean, former head of the Democratic National Committee, called IPAB “essentially a health care rationing body” and said he believes it will fail.
“The IPAB will be able to stop certain treatments its members do not favor by simply setting rates to levels where no doctor or hospital will perform them,” wrote Dean, who is also a physician. “Getting rid of the IPAB is something Democrats and Republicans ought to agree on.”
Indeed, a growing number of Democrats — many of whom face tough re-election bids next year — agree.
Over the past three months, 22 have signed on to the House IPAB repeal bill. They include lawmakers such as Rep. John Barrow, D-Ga., a longtime GOP target.
Arkansas Sen. Mark Pryor, R-Ark., is co-sponsoring the Senate repeal bill this year after spending the previous three defending IPAB. The Senate and House measures now have 32 and 192 co-sponsors, respectively.
What will this rationing look like? Just Facts spelled it out last year:
The implications of authorizing presidential appointees to unilaterally interpret what it means to “ration health care” are momentous. The board can define this term very narrowly, and it can impose polices that technically don’t fall under their definition of rationing but effectively cause it anyway. Enacting price controls is one obvious and probable way in which this can occur because this is the primary mechanism by which Obamacare seeks to control Medicare costs…
This is another reason Obamacare must be delayed and eventually eliminated as law. The lives of human beings should not be subject to unelected, unaccountable government boards. That leads to a devaluing of human life and a further encroachment on the life and liberty of all Americans, of which our Founders would be ashamed.
Tell your Senators and Congressman to sign onto the Lee and Meadows letters, and demand the House and Senate leadership delay Obamacare this fall. If they don’t, unelected and unchallengeable bureaucrats in Washington will decide which lives America can afford.