As the recent vote in the Senate makes clear, a complete repeal and replacement of ObamaCare will likely require a change in the composition of the Senate, currently under the control of Democrats who support the law, and the kind of President who understands that genuine health care “reform” does not contain provisions that will result in the denial of lifesaving medical treatment, and consequently, the premature and involuntary death of an unknown but immense number of Americans.
An important step in reversing this aspect of ObamaCare is HR452, which would repeal the “Independent Payment Advisory Board” in the Obama HealthCare Law. National Right to Life strongly supports its passage. Why?
Take a moment and think back to President Obama’s State of the Union Address. He said, “The health insurance law we passed last year will slow these rising costs.” And he called for “further reducing health care costs.”
On the principle that the devil is in the details, how WILL the Obama health care law “slow . . . rising costs”? In large part by forcing doctors and other health care providers to limit care.
Put another way, under Obamacare doctors and hospitals will no longer be free to determine, in consultation with the patient, what treatment and diagnostic tests are best suited to the patient’s condition. Instead, as a condition of being allowed to contract with qualified health insurance plans, all doctors and other health care providers will have to comply with “quality and efficiency” standards imposed by Washington. The objective is straightforward: force private health care spending below the rate of medical inflation.
Note: These “quality and efficiency” standards will establish one uniform national standard of care for what treatment may – and may not – be offered patients.
So, who will establish these all-important “quality and efficiency” standards?
Unless there is a change, such as HR 452 promotes, they will be drawn from the recommendations of an Independent Payment Advisory Board.
This little-publicized 18-member board is at the heart of the law’s rationing of life-saving medical treatment. Starting in 2015 and every two years thereafter, the Obama health care law directs this board to recommend ways to prevent private citizens from being allowed the choice of spending enough on health care to keep up with medical inflation.
What this amounts to is that doctors, hospitals, and other health care providers will be told by Washington bureaucrats just what diagnostic tests and medical care is considered to meet “quality” and “efficiency” standards not only for federally funded health care programs like Medicare, but also for health care paid for by private citizens and their nongovernmental health insurance.
You don’t have to be a medical economist to understand that the consequence of ever-increasing limits on the treatments and tests American health care providers will be allowed to give their patients will be that the quantity and quality of the health care will go into a steady decline As the standard of medical care is strangled more and more year after year, involuntary denial of lifesaving treatment will become commonplace.
This commentary was written by Dave Andrusko of National Right to Life