Medicare: A Promise to Arkansas Seniors

Medicare is a promise made to seniors who have paid into the program for years. In Congress I am working to strengthen Medicare for today’s seniors and the next generation of Americans.

This week the House of Representatives passed the Medicare Decisions Accountability Act. The measure will repeal the controversial Independent Payment Advisory Board, commonly known as IPAB, which would limit seniors’ access to Medicare services. I am an original cosponsor of the bill and I was proud to support the legislation when it came up for a vote this week.

Arkansas’s First Congressional District is home to many senior citizens who rely on Medicare to see their doctor and get their prescriptions filled. The Independent Payment Advisory Board has the real threat of limiting seniors’ access to doctors and medicine. Additionally, the doctor patient relationship must be preserved and seniors need to have options when they pick a doctor. IPAB could limit a patient’s selection of doctors and would harm the doctor patient relationship that is so essential for quality care. I will not stand idly by while a board of 15 unelected and unaccountable bureaucrats try to deny Medicare services to senior citizens in Arkansas.

President Obama’s healthcare bill that passed Congress two years ago this week took over $575 billion from the Medicare Trust Fund to pay for the costly government takeover of healthcare. Robbing the Medicare Trust Fund to pay for Obamacare is akin to robbing Peter to pay Paul. It’s bad policy and it would keep seniors from getting the medical care they need. I am working in Congress to make sure that Medicare is available for seniors today and into the future.

Passage of the Medicare Decisions Accountability Act will give seniors citizens in Arkansas the security of knowing that their Medicare benefits will not be denied by faceless bureaucrats. The Independent Payment Advisory Board will not protect seniors, it will limit access to care. Since my election to Congress, I have worked to keep the promise we have made to seniors with Medicare. Moving forward I will continue efforts to improve seniors’ access to Medicare and will fight off any actions to deny care.

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