Medical device makers drop $20 million on D.C. lobbying

June 14, 2010 by MassDevice staff

The medical device industry spent at least $20 million to lobby lawmakers and federal agencies during the first quarter.

K Street

The medical device industry once again spent big bucks to ensure its voice was heard in Washington during the first quarter, dropping more than $20 million on lobbying efforts for health issues at the U.S. House and Senate, the White House and the Food & Drug Administration.

According to filings made to the Lobbying Disclosure Act Database, during the first quarter ended March 30 companies spanning the industry's largest players and smallest fry spent amounts ranging from more than $7.1 million for General Electric Co. (NYSE:GE) to $8,000 for neurostimulation device maker Cyberonics Inc. (NSDQ:CYBX).

Predictably, some of the sector's biggest players were also its biggest spenders, according to the database. The next-largest lobbying spend after GE's was made by Johnson & Johnson (NYSE:JNJ) , which spent nearly $2.4 million during the quarter. Abbott (NYSE:ABT) spent more than $1.8 million; Medtronic (NYSE:MDT) and Baxter Healthcare (NYSE:BAX) each dropepd more than $1.2 million. Covidien plc (NYSE:COV) fell out of the top 10 spenders with $640,000; Boston Scientific Corp. (NYSE:BSX) spent a paltry amount in comparison with its peers, a mere $605,000.

Here's a partial list of the medical device industry's fourth-quarter lobbying spend, including a $200,000 contribution from industry advocate AdvaMed: