recommended reading

The Medical Device Industry Is Trying to Turn the Government Shutdown to Its Advantage

A government shutdown isn’t good for business: It hurts confidence and dings the bottom line. But one industry spent the weekend trying to paint a silver lining on a dark cloud: Medical device makers want the engine of a spending compromise to be a gift to their shareholderes.

Over the weekend, Republicans in the House rejected an agreement that would avoid a government shutdown. But in an attempt to save face with conservative members, they passed a bill that would impose a one-year delay on new health-care marketplaces that will provide low-income Americans with affordable health insurance. It also included a repeal of the law’s 2.3% sales tax on medical devices, which is expected to raise $30 billion over the next decade to finance the program.
Neither President Obama nor the Senate is likely to accept any delay to the implementation of the health care law. It’s also unlikely they’ll support the repeal of the medical devices tax, part of a suite of similar concessions delivered by other health care stakeholders from pharmaceutical companies to insurers.

But medical device lobbyists are eager to point out that unless  House Republican leadership blinks first and allows a clean spending bill to pass with Democratic votes, they’ll want something in a final deal to point to as a win for their side, specifically something related to the health care law.

The medical device industry and its $29 million-a-year lobbying coalition AdvaMed hope that a bipartisan push to repeal the device tax can be the pivot point for a compromise. Repeal of the tax has the backing of liberal lawmakers in Massachusetts and Minnesota, where device companies like Boston Scientific and Medtronic are headquartered. And, like any tax cut, it has the backing of conservatives: Seventy-nine Republican lawmakers signed a letter advocating a repeal of the tax earlier this year that was secretly authored by AdvaMed.

Today’s chasm may be too wide, but just as corporate tax giveaways helped lead to a fiscal cliff compromise, Washington often finds private interests easing the way to compromise.

Read this story at Quartz.

Threatwatch Alert

Thousands of cyber attacks occur each day

See the latest threats


Close [ x ] More from Nextgov

Thank you for subscribing to newsletters from
We think these reports might interest you:

  • It’s Time for the Federal Government to Embrace Wireless and Mobility

    The United States has turned a corner on the adoption of mobile phones, tablets and other smart devices, outpacing traditional desktop and laptop sales by a wide margin. This issue brief discusses the state of wireless and mobility in federal government and outlines why now is the time to embrace these technologies in government.

  • Featured Content from RSA Conference: Dissed by NIST

    Learn more about the latest draft of the U.S. National Institute of Standards and Technology guidance document on authentication and lifecycle management.

  • A New Security Architecture for Federal Networks

    Federal government networks are under constant attack, and the number of those attacks is increasing. This issue brief discusses today's threats and a new model for the future.

  • Going Agile:Revolutionizing Federal Digital Services Delivery

    Here’s one indication that times have changed: Harriet Tubman is going to be the next face of the twenty dollar bill. Another sign of change? The way in which the federal government arrived at that decision.

  • Software-Defined Networking

    So many demands are being placed on federal information technology networks, which must handle vast amounts of data, accommodate voice and video, and cope with a multitude of highly connected devices while keeping government information secure from cyber threats. This issue brief discusses the state of SDN in the federal government and the path forward.

  • The New IP: Moving Government Agencies Toward the Network of The Future

    Federal IT managers are looking to modernize legacy network infrastructures that are taxed by growing demands from mobile devices, video, vast amounts of data, and more. This issue brief discusses the federal government network landscape, as well as market, financial force drivers for network modernization.


When you download a report, your information may be shared with the underwriters of that document.