The powerful Ways & Means Committee of the U.S. House of Representatives is slated to convene a markup session for 1 of the bills circulating on Capitol Hill that would do away with the medical device tax.
The 2.3% levy on U.S. sales of prescribed medical devices was enacted as part of the Affordable Care Act and went into effect at the beginning of 2013. It’s forecast to raise between $20 billion and $30 billion over 10 years.
The “Protect Medical Innovation Act of 2015,” or H.R. 160, sponsored by longtime medical device industry champion Rep. Erik Paulsen (R-Minn.), is 1 of several bills that would do away with the tax. The House Ways & Means Committee is scheduled to mark up the bill tomorrow morning, along with a slate of other healthcare-related measures.
There are several bills afoot in both the Senate and House that would do away with the tax, in addition to Paulsen’s bill, which has 281 co-sponsors including 40 Democrats. Sen. Orrin Hatch (R-Utah) is the sponsor of the Senate’s companion bill for repealing the medical device tax, S. 149 or the “Medical Device Access & Innovation Protection Act.” The measure has 36 co-sponsors, including 5 Democrats.
A pair of Democrat-led bills would also repeal the tax, but unlike the Hatch and Paulsen measures would replace the lost revenue by closing tax loopholes for the energy industry. A bill by Sen. Ed Markey (D-Mass.), S. 844 or the “No Taxation on Device Innovation Act,” has no co-sponsors. Its counterpart in the House, H.R. 1533 or the “Medical Device Tax Elimination Act” sponsored by Rep. Alma Adams (D-N.C.), ahs 4 co-sponsors, all Democrats.
Repealing the tax also came up in a U.S. Senate subcommittee meeting in April, when the Senate Finance Committee’s healthcare panel, led by Sen. Patrick Toomey (R-Pa.) and ranking member Sen. Debbie Stabenow (D-Mich.), convened the hearing to consider the impact of the medical device tax.