The goal of the Independent Payment Advisory Board (IPAB) — a cost-control mechanism that the health reform law created — is to make sure that promising ideas to control health care costs “don’t fall on deaf ears,” former Office of Management and Budget Director Peter Orszag explained on a conference call we held for journalists today. The House is scheduled to vote this week on whether to repeal IPAB.
“Congress can act [to control costs], but if Congress doesn’t act, [IPAB ensures] there is some other mechanism to increase the odds that we can move in the right direction,” Orszag added.
Orszag, Princeton economist and leading health care economist Uwe Reinhardt, and CBPP Senior Fellow Paul Van de Water discussed IPAB’s potential to rein in cost growth and corrected misconceptions about the board, such as that it will ration health care. (Health reform specifically prohibits IPAB from rationing health care, raising Medicare’s premiums or cost sharing, cutting benefits, or restricting eligibility.)
Click on the button below for the audio of the presentation portion of the call.