January 23, 2018

Deal To Reopen Government Includes Medical Device Tax Suspension

Cook Medical is a medical device manufacturer based in Bloomington. The company employs more than 7,000 people nationwide. - Barbara Brosher/WFIU

Cook Medical is a medical device manufacturer based in Bloomington. The company employs more than 7,000 people nationwide.

Barbara Brosher/WFIU

The deal Congress struck  to reopen the federal government includes a break for medical device manufacturers.

The companies were poised to make their first 2.3 percent excise tax payments of the year next week. The bill Congress passed to reopen the government suspends the medical device tax for another two years, until January 2020. It goes into effect retroactively, starting with Jan. 1 of this year.

Lawmakers originally put the tax on hold in 2015, but it went back into effect at the beginning of this month after lawmakers failed to pass an extension.

The Indiana Medical Device Manufacturers Council represents many of the more than 150 companies that contribute to medical device manufacturing in the state. Spokesperson Hannah Carlock says the tax hinders innovation and growth.

“The last time that this tax was put in place, 29,000 people lost their jobs across America, and that impacted Indiana quite heavily,” she says.

Bloomington-based Cook Medical is also applauding the measure, but says in a statement a permanent repeal of the tax is needed.

“Repealing this tax is crucial for patients who rely on medical devices and look to our industry to continue researching and developing projects that will innovate new therapies for those who need it most,” Cook Group Chairman Steve Ferguson says in a statement.

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