House to vote on repealing Medicare cost board

WASHINGTON (AP) -- The House is set to vote Thursday on repealing a new Medicare cost-control board that few people have ever heard of.

The Independent Payment Advisory Board was created by President Barack Obama's health care overhaul law to keep Medicare costs from zooming out of control.

Called IPAB for short, the panel has yet to be appointed. But that hasn't stopped Republicans from labeling it a rationing panel.

IPAB has the power to force cuts to service providers if costs rise beyond certain levels and Congress fails to substitute its own plan for savings. But the law explicitly forbids the board from rationing care or shifting costs to seniors.

Republicans see an election-year issue in Thursday's vote, even if the Democratic-led Senate ignores the repeal legislation, as expected.


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