WASHINGTON, D.C. – The Advanced Medical Technology Association (AdvaMed), the Medical Device Manufacturers Association (MDMA), the Medical Imaging & Technology Alliance (MITA) and a broad coalition of medical innovators, physician inventors, patient groups, and others sent a letter to congressional leadership today urging them to permanently repeal the medical device excise tax.
“The United States is the world leader in manufacturing life-saving and life-enhancing diagnostics and treatments within an industry that is an important engine for economic growth,” the signatories wrote. “Unfortunately, when the medical device tax was in effect, it had an adverse impact on R&D investment and job creation, jeopardizing the U.S. position as a global leader in medical device innovation.”
The medical device tax is a 2.3 percent levy on the sale of nearly every medical device sold in the country—from pacemakers and stents to MRI machines and CT scanners. The tax has previously been suspended by Congress twice, but absent Congressional action the most recent suspension will expire on January 1, 2020– a reality which threatens to once again undermine jobs, patients, and important breakthroughs in medical innovation.
“We applaud the sweeping coalition of more than 600 signatories for leading the charge in urging lawmakers to repeal this economically harmful and innovation stifling tax,” said Dennis Durmis, Senior Vice President Bayer Radiology, Americas Region, and Chair of MITA Board of Directors. “By making their voices heard in the halls of Congress, innovators, patients, and job creators are letting our elected leaders know that the time has come to end permanently this punitive and burdensome excise tax.”
“Congress needs to act now to stop a $20 billion tax on the medical technology industry from coming back at the end of the year,” said Kevin Lobo, Chairman and CEO of Stryker and Chairman of AdvaMed. “This tax hurts innovation and the development of future treatments and cures. American patients and health care providers are counting on our industry to help improve and save lives and this tax is an obstacle to that mission.”
“This diverse community of voices urging Congress to fully and permanently repeal the medical device tax is yet another example of the growing coalition working together to ensure this tax on innovation never returns,” said Jeff McCaulley, CEO of Avalign Technologies and Chairman of MDMA. “Having fought against the medical device tax when it was first proposed in 2009, MDMA remains committed to working with Members of Congress and all stakeholders to make sure that this disastrous policy never diverts precious resources away from the cures and therapies of tomorrow.”