Wednesday, January 25, 2012


OBAMACARE is correctly known as the Affordable Care Act (ACA) or as the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, nick-named "Pee-Pahka" after its initials.

Precious little was heard about the ACA in the president's State of the Union speech. Some pundits suspect the president is preparing to slip away quietly from support of the ACA since specific parts of the bill are under bipartisan attack, e.g., Section 10320 which sets up the Independent Payment Advisory Board (the IPAB). The IPAB was originally the IMAB, Independent Medicare Advisory Board, derisively known at the time as Euthanasia for the Elderly. Disguised now as a more equitable board, the IPAB still aims its arrows straight for the hearts of the elderly. In fact, the IPAB would be made up of appointed persons, none elected, and would not have to be comprised of physicians. The IPAB would appoint bean counters, annoint them as health care deciders, and give them the power to undercut the best efforts of caring physicians.

The purpose of the IPAB would be to reduce costs and to decide which procedures in medical care, what facilities, and which equipment used in patient care should be considered medically necessary. There is resistance in Congress since an effort to repeal Section 10320 surfaced long ago, viz., Sen. John Cornyn, R- Texas. The president expects a tough time for re-election. Speculation is that he may not want to drag the ACA, mocked as Obamacare, behind him as he swims for political survival. Neither does he want to abandon it.

Earlier references to the ACA and Sec. 10320 appear in this blog, issues of 4/6/11 (Obamacare revisited), 1/18/11 (Repeal Section 10320), and 11/04/10 (Obamacare needs instant revision).

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