Photo of Medtronic headquarters from Wikipedia.
Medical device makers aren’t sitting quietly as Congressional lawmakers debate the medical device tax. In fact, some are spending millions lobbying representatives in hopes the tax will eventually be struck down.
According to a late-January report by the Center for Responsive Politics, lobbyists for the medical device makers handed out nearly $33 million in the form of campaign contributions and donations to support groups, the highest amount lobbied by the group since 1998.
Device maker Medtronic led the year, spending more than $5 million on lobbying efforts.
Part of the Affordable Care Act, the medical device tax placed a 2.3 percent levy on the sale of any medical devices, which the manufacturer or the importer must pay to the Internal Revenue Service. Supporters say the tax helps pay for reforms, while opponents say the tax will tighten cash flow for device makers, hurting their abilities to innovate.
According to the Center, much of the lobbying has been in the form of campaign donations for politicians who have backed various bills to repeal the tax. Those include Democrats as well as Republicans, who are most outspoken about killing the tax.
All of Medtronic’s top donors were Minnesota politicians, including Democratic Sens. Al Franken and Amy Klobuchar.
Here’s the list of companies in the medical device lobby, along with the amount each spent in 2014:
|Academy of Radiology Research||-||$140,000|
|Alliance Surgical Distributors||-||$30,000|
|American Neuromonitoring Assn||-||$200,000|
|American Orthotic & Prosthetic Assn||-||$200,000|
|Baxter International||Baxter Healthcare||$2,820,000|
|Becton, Dickinson & Co||-||$1,040,000|
|Bone Growth Stimulator Coalition||-||$90,000|
|Boston Scientific Corp||-||$1,740,489|
|CR Bard Inc||-||$120,000|
|Direct Supply Inc||-||$90,000|
|Gordian Medical Inc||-||$130,000|
|Health Industry Distributors Assn||-||$155,000|
|Healthcare Nutrition Council||-||$60,000|
|Hearing Industries Assn||-||$40,000|
|Hill-Rom Holdings||Hill-Rom Co||$195,000|
|Institut Merieux||BioFire Defense||$120,000|
|Institut Merieux||BioFire Diagnostics||$30,000|
|Intl Assn Med Equip Remark & Servicers||-||$40,000|
|Intl Contrast Ultrasound Society||-||$150,000|
|Johnson & Johnson||McNeil Consumer Healthcare||$60,000|
|Kinetic Concepts||Lifecell Corp||$150,000|
|Med-Care Diabetic & Medical Supplies||-||$390,000|
|Medical Device Competitiveness Coalition||-||$320,000|
|Medical Device Manufacturers Assn||-||$520,000|
|Medical Information Working Group||-||$420,000|
|Merit Medical Systems||-||$70,000|
|National Disease Research Interchange||-||$120,000|
|Natl Coalition For Assistive/Rehab Tech||-||$162,000|
|Ohio Willow Wood||-||$40,000|
|Philips Electronics||Philips Healthcare||$220,000|
|PillGuard Medication Delivery Systems||-||$150,000|
|Pride Mobility Products||-||$240,000|
|Smith & Nephew||-||$1,740,000|
|St Jude Medical||-||$635,000|
|Temp Time Inc||-||$120,000|
|Trident USA Health Services||-||$90,000|
|Varian Medical Systems||-||$710,000|
|Welch Allyn Inc||-||$327,084|
Source: Center for Responsive Politics