Mike Gallagher

11/02/2017 | Press release | Distributed by Public on 11/02/2017 18:00

Gallagher Votes to Strengthen Medicare & Repeal IPAB

Washington, D.C. - Today in the House, Rep. Mike Gallagher voted in favor of the Protecting Seniors' Access to Medicare Act, a bill to strengthen Medicare through repealing the Independent Payment Advisory Board (IPAB). The IPAB is a panel of 15 unelected bureaucrats who have the power to circumvent Congress and reduce Medicare spending for seniors as the board sees fit. With these potential arbitrary Medicare cuts, many seniors in Northeast Wisconsin would see a decrease in access to care.

'The IPAB is one of the worst elements of the ACA; not only does it threaten the quality of care our seniors receive, but it puts an advisory board of unelected bureaucrats in Washington, D.C. in between a patient and their doctor,' Rep. Gallagher said. 'By repealing IPAB, the House took a critical step in protecting seniors' Medicare benefits and care, and restoring power back to the People to make decisions about their healthcare,' he continued.

Background on HR 849, the Protecting Seniors Access to Medicare Act, and IPAB:

  • The bill had 270 cosponsors, including Rep. Gallagher, and represented broad bipartisan recognition of IPAB's flaws.
  • IPAB was authorized to unilaterally slash reimbursement rates for care if Medicare per-capita costs rose more than 1 percentage point above GDP growth.
  • The Kaiser Family Foundation projects per-capita Medicare spending to grow at 4.5% annually between 2016 and 2026, well above GDP projections, triggering drastic IPAB cuts that would slash benefits for current retirees.
  • Passage of H.R. 849 and repeal of IPAB provides Medicare recipients, their families, and healthcare providers with certainty that the care they rely on today will remain available and justly compensated.
  • Supported by over 700 health and senior advocacy groups including the Wisconsin Hospital Association, Wisconsin Medical Society and Wisconsin Podiatric Medical Association.