Medicare: right to purchase unrationed insurance
Kyl Amendment
Senate Roll Call No. 53
105th Congress, 2nd Session

Agreed to: 51-47 (see complete tally)
The federal government imposes price controls on doctors and other health care providers for care given to those eligible for Medicare. In some cases, the federal payments fall below the cost of providing treatment -- which means that many health-care providers are unwilling to provide the treatments. To make matters worse, under current law, Medicare beneficiaries are not permitted to pay for such treatment themselves, unless the doctor who provides the treatment agrees not to receive Medicare payments for any patients for two years. This provision effectively prevents older Americans from purchasing needed -- in some cases life-saving -- medical treatment with their own money. Pro-life Sen. Jon Kyl (R-Az.) offered an amendment to the Fiscal Year 1999 Budget Resolution to express the "sense of Congress" in favor of eliminating the restriction on physicians who want to provide such privately paid services to persons who are also covered by Medicare. NRLC supported the Kyl Amendment, which was adopted, 51-47, Vote No. 53, April 1, 1998. However, this vote was non-binding, and the restriction on physicians remained the law.

Vote Map: Senate Roll Call No. 53
Votes For : 51
Votes Against : 47
Not Voting : 1

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