House Republicans hope to make waves by holding hearings on Medicare physician reimbursement rules and developing alternatives to the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act of 2010 (PPACA).
Members of the House Energy & Commerce health subcommittee talked about their plans for the coming year today during a hearing.
Many observers say little legislation is likely to pass this year as lawmakers gear up for the fall 2012 elections.
But Rep. Joe Pitts, R-Pa., says believes his subcommittee can do some good by holding hearings on "what remains hidden" in PPACA.
The subcommittee will look especially hard at the effect of the act on states, Pitts says.
The subcommittee also will try to come up with ideas for what is wrong with PPACA, in the event that PPACA is repealed, without creating massive new spending or government control, Pitts says.
Congress has been trying to reform and reduce Medicare physician reimbursement rates for years, but lawmakers have never been able to get themselves to go ahead with letting cuts take effect.
The health subcommittee will hold a series of hearings on that topic and is especially interested in getting input from medical associations, Pitts says.