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House Repeals Onerous Medical Device Tax

Washington, D.C. Congressman Bill Shuster (PA-09) joined 270 of his colleagues in the House of Representatives to pass H.R. 436, the Protect Medical Innovation Act of 2012. This important legislation repeals a 2.3 percent “Obamacare” tax on the manufacture of medical devices. Repealing this tax will protect American jobs, help keep down healthcare costs, and allow companies to continue to invest in innovation and new technologies.

“The president’s policies are failing, they’re making the economy worse. Obamacare has saddled job creators with a tremendous amount of uncertainty, which is keeping them from hiring new workers and acting as a serious impediment to economic growth,” said Shuster.

The medical device tax – estimated at $30 billion – is already resulting in job losses and more layoffs are expected. An industry study estimates that the new tax on medical devices could result in the loss of up to 43,000 American jobs. Further, it will force manufacturers to stop funding research and development of new devices, ending the innovation of life-saving equipment.

“Not only will this tax cost jobs and stifle innovation, it will increase healthcare costs for patients, as medical device manufacturers will be forced to pass the cost of the tax on to consumers in order to stay in business.”

In addition to the repeal of the medical device tax, the legislation would allow consumers to use their tax-free health spending accounts for the purchase of over-the-counter medicine and to cash out up to $500 of unused funds from their account at the end of the year, both of which were eliminated by Obamacare.