Congress suspends medical device tax through stopgap spending deal — 6 insights

The medical device industry had reason to celebrate after Congress suspended the medical device tax for two years through its stopgap spending measure to reopen the government, STAT reports.

Here's what you should know:

1. Congress suspended the industry-wide tax before the first payments were due.

2. The ACA established the 2.3 percent tax to help pay for the law's insurance subsidies. The tax had yet to go into effect.

3. The language included in the stopgap measure will delay the tax until Jan. 1, 2020. The federal government will lose $3.7 billion because of the suspension.

4. The bill also delays the ACA's 40 percent tax on high-cost employer insurance until 2022.

5. Medical device lobbyists lauded the decision. Medical Device Manufacturer Association
President Mark Leahey specifically applauded Congress for its actions while pleading for a permanent repeal of the tax this year.

6. The healthcare industry spends the most money on lobbying of any U.S. industry. In 2017, the industry spent $209 million on lobbying, according to OpenSecrets.org.

Medical device companies donated a large majority of their contributions to Republican candidates through 2017 and 2018, according to OpenSecrets.org.

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