The medical device excise tax is history

Above: Medical devices, such as implanted pacemakers, are vulnerable to hackers if they are connected to internet networks. (U.S. Air Force photo by Kemberly Groue via Creative Commons) Bioscience | 21 Dec, 2019 |

On Friday, December 20. 2019, President Donald Trump signed the bi-partisan 2020 Appropriations Act that includes the U.S. Government funding packages and other key pieces of legislation impacting our medical technology and healthcare communities.

No more suspensions.  The Device Tax is history.

With the President’s signature, the Medical Device Excise Tax which originated as a component of the Affordable Care Act and has been under a two year suspension that would have expired on December 31, 2019 is repealed.

Nine Members of Arizona’s Congressional delegation worked diligently to repeal the tax and served as co-sponsors of the Protect Medical Innovation Act in their respective chambers.

“With the repeal of the Medical Device Excise Tax, our Arizona Medical Device community can make more investments into the people and projects that can improve quality of life for people in Arizona and across our country,” stated AZBio president and CEO Joan Koerber-Walker. “A big thank you goes out to Senator Kyrsten Sinema, Senator Martha McSally and Representatives Tom O’Halleran (AZ-01), Ann Kirkpatrick (AZ-02), Paul Gosar (AZ-04), Andy Biggs (AZ-05), David Schweikert (AZ-06), Debbie Lesko (AZ-08), and Greg Stanton (AZ-09) for everything they did to make full repeal a reality.”

Other industry related components signed into law as part of the funding package include:

— Repeal of the “Cadillac Tax,” an enacted but not yet implemented part of the Affordable Care Act which would have imposed a 40% tax on the most generous employer-provided health insurance plans;

— Repeal of the ACA’s Health Insurance Fee Tax (HIT) on premiums

— Enactment of the LAB Act which will improve the accuracy of Medicare reimbursement rates for clinical diagnostic laboratory services and help to establish a more realistic reimbursement system for innovative diagnostics that save and improve peoples’ lives;

— Enactment of the CREATES Act which is designed to support  expediting the development of biosimillars; 

More Funding for Science: 

— NIH:  +7% or $2.6 billion more, totaling a $41.7 billion budget

— NSF:  +2.5% or $203 million more, totaling a $8.28 billion budget

— DOE:  +6.3% or $415 million more, totaling a $7 billion budget for the Office of Science

— NASA: +3.4% or $233 million more, totaling a $7.14 billion budget.

Increased FDA funding of  $91 million, totaling $3.2 billion in discretionary funding.  Total FDA  funding with User Fees totals $5.8 billion with $75 million designated for the 21st Century Cures Act.

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