Friday, April 22, 2011

Catron: IPAB Is an Acronym for 'Death Panel'

In today's AmSpec, David Catron cuts through all of the Obama administration's double-speak and explains why, "IPAB Is an Acronym for 'Death Panel'".

Here is an excerpt:
IPAB [Independent Payment Advisory Board] was created pursuant to section 3403 of the ironically named Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA), and its ostensible purpose is to "control costs." In reality, it will do nothing at all about costs. Instead, the board's fifteen "experts" will impose old-fashioned price controls. Before Obamacare was signed into law in March of 2010, only Congress had the power to make changes to Medicare's reimbursement rates. But PPACA, for all intents and purposes, transfers that power to this tiny cadre of presidential appointees who will have no accountability to the voters.

In theory, IPAB can only propose changes to Medicare's payment rates. In practice, however, the board's proposals will take effect automatically unless Congress passes contrary legislation and the President signs it into law...
Catron notes how progressives like Jay Bookman support these price controls precisely because it will lead to rationing:
"Death panels exist, they will exist in any conceivable system of health-care delivery, and we all know they are necessary but prefer to ignore it."

For these people, it's either us or Granny: "Somebody has to say no to the terminal patient who refuses to acknowledge that he or she is terminal and demands hopeless if expensive treatment... Somebody has to have the power to rule that Procedure A or Drug A is more cost-effective than Procedure B or Drug B... Even Heaven has a gatekeeper."
(Read the full text of, "IPAB Is an Acronym for 'Death Panel'".)

In essence, the supporters of IPAB (and of ObamaCare in general) take the approach of, "Because government has to pay for everyone's health care, the government has to decide who is allowed to get what".

This is why medical rationing will be the dead end of any kind of government-run "universal health care" -- both figuratively and literally -- as Catron makes abundantly clear.