Dear Senator Cornyn:
The American Association for Clinical Chemistry (AACC) endorses S.260, the “Protecting Seniors’
Access to Medicare Act of 2017,” which would eliminate the Independent Payment Advisory Board
(IPAB) created by the Affordable Care Act (ACA) of 2010. This Board is empowered to make cuts in
Medicare reimbursement without congressional authorization. We are concerned that ACA gives too
much authority to the IPAB.
AACC is a global scientific and medical professional organization dedicated to clinical laboratory science
and its application to healthcare. AACC brings together more than 50,000 clinical laboratory
professionals, physicians, research scientists, and business leaders from around the world focused on
clinical chemistry, molecular diagnostics, mass spectrometry, translational medicine, lab management,
and other areas of progressing laboratory science. Since 1948, AACC has worked to advance the common
interests of the field, providing programs that advance scientific collaboration, knowledge, expertise, and
Specifically, S.260 would eliminate sections 3403 and 10320 of ACA, which define the IPAB Board and
its responsibilities, outline its membership, and establish a process for making ongoing payment
modifications and cuts. ACA stipulates that the IPAB recommended cuts in Medicare reimbursement are
triggered if certain health care spending limits are exceeded. Congress can forestall these reductions by
enacting a separate, but equal package of spending cuts.
AACC is concerned that the IPAB will be making policy decisions with far-reaching ramifications for our
health care system without congressional or public input. We believe that any deliberations involving
payment system changes should be transparent and open to stakeholder participation. The IPAB does not
provide for such a process. AACC urges Congress to repeal the IPAB and allow future payment
modifications to be made through the existing legislative process.
We look forward to working with you on this important matter. If you have any questions, please email
Vince Stine, PhD, AACC Director of Government Affairs, at [email protected].
Michael J. Bennett PhD, FRCPath, FACB, DABCC