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Category Archives: Senator Tom Coburn

Is the IPAB the Democrats “Final Solution” ?

The Democrats have been voracious in their attacks on the House Republicans budget plan, especially on the specific proposal to reform and save Medicare. When challenged as to their proposal, Nancy Pelosi responded, “We have a plan. It’s called Medicare.” She then elaborated saying, “We gave the blueprint for how we strengthen Medicare in the Affordable Care Act.”

While the ACA does address an increased focus on eliminating waste, fraud, and abuse, the largest impact from the legislation will be realized through the IPAB or Independent Payment Advisory Board; a 15 member group of unelected bureaucrats with significant authority over Medicare payment rates. Beginning in 2014, in any year in which the Medicare per capita growth rate exceeded a target growth rate, the IPAB would be required to recommend Medicare spending reductions.  Their recommendations would become law unless Congress passed an alternative proposal that achieved the same level of budgetary savings. Subject to some limitations—hospitals, for example, would be exempt until 2020—the IPAB could recommend spending reductions affecting Medicare providers and suppliers, as well as Medicare Advantage and Prescription Drug Plans.

Since the other components in the ACA do nothing to bend the health care cost curve down, the actions of this board will most likely result the following;

1.)     Reduced provider reimbursements and the resulting reduction in the number of physicians willing to accept Medicare patients.

2.)    A reduction in coverage of medical supplies and pharmaceuticals including a mandate to the use of a mandatory generic, as well as perhaps a therapeutic substitution policy, in all Medicare services, while demanding more rebates from Rx manufacturers for their brand name drugs in order for them to participate in the Medicare program. This will make approval of coverage of new procedures and technologies significantly less likely.

3.)     Rationing, the IPAB will most likely also utilize rationing to achieve the cost control target as it is the most direct way to get at the problem of cost overruns that they are mandated to control.  

In summary, the Democrats “final solution” for saving Medicare is to preserve the program by denying or reducing the ability for beneficiaries to have access to health Care.

 

Senator Tom Coburn – “The Time for Leadership is Now!”

There is a commercial for the Postal Service in which an apathetic employee is questioned about spending more than he has to for shipping and he replies “It’s not my money and I really do not care”. Well, yesterday Senator Coburn appeared on Cavuto on the Fox News channel and while discussing waste, fraud, and abuse he was asked how and why is this happening on such a rampant scale and his opinion was it happens because “we have people who are spending not their own money, somebody elses and it’s not as important.”

The Senator then went on to once again explain the depth and severity of our debt crisis and the urgency required to reform entitlements saying, “Here’s the question. Is there anyone in America, who knows what our financial situation is, that thinks Medicare going to be the same five years from now as it is today? The answer is that it is a financial impossibility.”

Cavuto then questioned whether politicians will have the will to fix the problem or will they retreat in an effort to get re-elected and Coburn replied, “If that’s the case our country is toast”.

Finally the senator surmised that if we are to avoid a debt crisis we must act boldly and quickly, “The time for leadership is now”.

 

“Unfortunately, the president failed to put a serious proposal on the table.” – Senator Tom Coburn

Senator Tom Coburn gives a sobering critique of the pesidents debt reduction plan.

While the president calls for continued pandering by protecting unsustainable entitlements in their current forms Coburn more clearly defines the situation.

“What the country needs to hear from the leaders in Washington is that we understand how big this problem is and that we’re wiling to lose elections to do what’s best for the country and that’s what’s not happening now,” Coburn said on “Fox News Sunday.”

 

There is a Clarion Call to Fix the Problem, Now!

Once again I am posting video from Senator Coburn, this time from the Senate floor. I have resisted posting this in the interest of variety but the truth is that what Dr. Coburn is alerting us to is simply too important not to post. We are currently adding 1.5 trillion dollars a year to our national debt. We borrow 40 cents of every dollar we spend. Most experts predict an increase in interest rates in the near term. We would all like to think that we can continue to kick this can down the road, and most of our elected leaders in Washington seem to content to do just that. Even most of the so-called fiscal conservatives our only proposing meager cuts. While most of the congressman on either side of the aisle tow their party’s line, Senator Coburn’s message has been increasingly presidential. Dire circumstances in history have required just this sort of selfless leadership and we may as a nation be facing our biggest challenge yet.

 

Senator Coburn On Obama and The Desired Attributes of Our Next President

Senator Tom Coburn submitted his performance evaluation on his “good” friend Barack Obama.

Coburn also elaborated on a major reason our nation is in the fiscal mess it is.

The Oklahoma Senator then went on to specify what attributes our next president must possess.

 
 
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