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Letter: Group was seeking to protect itself, not seniors or Medicare

Group was seeking to protect itself, not seniors or Medicare

You might have seen an email from the Healthcare Leadership Council titled, “Will the Senate Say No to Millions of Seniors?” You must call your senator to urge him to “protect seniors by repealing the IPAB now.” The web address is ProtectMedicareNow.org. What’s your response? Protect seniors? Save Medicare? What is this dreaded IPAB that must be repealed?

But wait a minute. What is the Healthcare Leadership Council? With a few keystrokes – that most wouldn’t be bothered to do – you quickly learn that it’s from an organization of pharmaceutical, medical services and insurance CEOs. They’d obviously be against the IPAB (never actually identified as the Independent Payment Advisory Board), established to control costs under the Affordable Care Act by preventing overbilling and fraud. Far from protecting Medicare, this campaign was actually intended to protect their cash flow and profits. They’ve spent millions over the past several years on lobbying and ads calling for abolishment of the IPAB, while masquerading as patient advocates, calling the IPAB “government takeover of health care.” Sadly, they finally succeeded.

Regrettably, the IPAB was killed as a minor item quietly slipped into the recently passed budget deal approved by both houses and signed by President Trump. Sadly, almost no one even noticed except the Healthcare Leadership Council members, who are likely still celebrating, proving that government waste is some company’s income and profit.

Don’t fall for the next scam! Take just a minute or two to check and see who actually benefits.

Richard Clements

Williamsville

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