Members of the House Ways and Means Committee today agreed by a voice vote to back H.R. 452, the Medicare Decisions Accountability Act bill.
The bill would eliminate a new Medicare cost-cutting entity, the Independent Payment Advisory Board (IPAB).
Ways and Means has primary jurisdiction over the bill.
Another committee with jurisdiction over H.R. 452, the House Energy and Commerce Committee, approved the bill by a voice vote Monday.
Earlier, Democrats on the Energy and Commerce health subcommittee could get only five of the 11 Democrats on the subcommittee to vote against H.R. 452: four Democrats were absent during the subcommittee vote, and 2 crossed party lines to vote against the bill.
Ways and Means Chairman David Camp, R-Mich., and Rep. Wally Herger, R-Calif., the chairman of the committee’s health subcommittee, said in a statement that they believe there is strong bipartisan support for H.R. 452.
“Repealing IPAB reinforces that doctors and patients – not a board of unelected bureaucrats – should be making health care decisions,” Camp and Herger say in the statement.
Congress created the 15-member board with a provision in the federal Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act of 2010 (PPACA).
IPAB provision drafters were hoping to give IPAB the independence and freedom from lobbying to hold down the prices Medicare pays for care.