MITA Commends New Research Paper Demonstrating the Many Flaws of the Medical Device Tax

Pacific Research Institute Calls on Congress to Complete Unfinished Bipartisan Business and Repeal the Device Tax.

Washington, DC, October 16, 2018 --( The Medical Imaging & Technology Alliance – the leading organization and collective voice of medical imaging equipment manufacturers, innovators and developers – today applauded a new research study by the Pacific Research Institute (PRI) showing the medical device tax reduced research and development investment and cost tens of thousands of U.S. jobs when it was in effect.

The paper’s author, Dr. Wayne Winegarden, Senior Fellow in Business and Economics at PRI, called on Congress to complete unfinished bipartisan business this year by repealing the medical device tax.

“As the congressional session winds down, Congress has some unfinished business – taking action to repeal the medical device tax,” Winegarden said. “The medical device tax is bad tax policy that has increased patient costs, reduced access to life-saving technology, and reduced profits and jobs. Repealing the tax would bring many benefits, such as increased medical innovation and better-quality care for patients.”

The paper points to the flaws in the 2.3 percent excise tax on the sale of medical equipment concluding the tax is “a failure.” The analysis included in the paper cites recent data showing that Congress isn’t even collecting the revenue it anticipated – $2.1 billion below estimates between 2013 and 2015.

Joe Robinson, Chairman of the MITA Board of Directors and Senior Vice President of Health Systems Solutions at Philips, noted the PRI study is the latest analysis demonstrating how severely the tax is flawed as well as the data-driven consequences impacting research and development and U.S. jobs if it isn’t finally repealed.

“A substantial bipartisan majority of U.S. Representatives voted overwhelmingly to permanently repeal the medical device tax in July,” Robinson said. “We ask the Senate to finish the job this year and vote to permanently repeal the device tax.”

Congress has suspended the medical device tax twice since it went into effect in 2013, but companies have still faced uncertainty around its re-implementation. Moreover, data from the U.S. Department of Commerce has showed that the tax killed nearly 29,000 U.S. medical technology industry jobs over the two years when it was originally implemented.

According to a survey of leading medical device manufacturers, almost 70 percent of firms said that permanent repeal would make them more likely to hire in the future. Another 60 percent said they would invest some of the resources currently designated to cover the tax into additional research and development spending.

The Medical Imaging & Technology Alliance (MITA), a division of NEMA, is the collective voice of medical imaging equipment manufacturers, innovators, and product developers. It represents companies whose sales comprise more than 90 percent of the global market for advanced medical imaging technology. Visit Follow MITA on Twitter @MITAToday.­­­­
Medical Imaging and Technology Alliance
Tracy Cullen