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The med-tech tax repeal movement gains momentum


The med-tech tax repeal movement gains momentum

By MassDevice staff November 4th, 2011

Minnesota Rep. Erik Paulsen gains support for his attempts to repeal the 2.3 percent medical device tax prescribed by President Barack Obama's health care overhaul.

Rep. Erik Paulsen's (R-Minn.) ongoing effort to repeal the medical device tax seems to be gaining momentum, now that 204 members of the U.S. House of Representatives have signed on to his bill.

Paulsen has said that the tax, slated to be implemented as part of the Patient Protection & Affordable Care Act after 2013, will reduce medical technology jobs across the country.

"This may be the most anti-innovation piece of legislation to come along in some time," Paulsen said in a letter [1] jointly written with Rep. Jim Gerlach (R-Pa.) last month promoting the "Defend Medical Innovation Act," which seeks to block the 2.3 percent tax on medical device company revenues prescribed by President Barack Obama's health care overhaul last year.

Paulsen and Gerlach wrote that the measure will be directly responsible for some 43,000 lost jobs, putting American global competitiveness in peril. Paulsen's home state of Minnesota is home to some of the largest device makers, including Medtronic Inc. (NYSE:MDT [8]) and St. Jude Medical Inc. (NYSE:STJ [9]).

He originally introduced legislation repealing the tax in April 2010, but received little support. Paulsen began circulating a "Dear Colleague" letter [10] in January when the GOP-controlled 112th Congress convened.

His letter had support from 154 signers as of June, a congressional aide told MassDevice at the time.

Paulsen has emerged as a prominent voice for the med-tech industry, promising to revamp FDA policies that he says are delaying life-saving technologies [11] from hitting the U.S. market.

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