Device tax not a windfall, lobby saysLetters from hospitals and group purchasing organizations that pleaded with the IRS to ensure device makers pay for their share of the cost of health reform were recently answered by a medical imaging original equipment manufacturer trade lobby.

The lobby said that an excise tax planned to be implemented next year would not be a windfall for the industry.

"Only in Washington could paying a $30 billion tax over the next 10 years be viewed as a windfall opportunity, but that's exactly the false claim being made," Gail Rodriguez, executive director of the Medical Imaging & Technology Alliance, said in a statement. "MITA continues to oppose the device tax precisely because we believe it creates strong headwinds against an important sector of the U.S. economy."

A 2.3 percent excise tax on device companies was mandated by the Affordable Care Act, which is set to be implemented in 2013. Some say the tax will benefit the device makers because it can be deducted from income and the costs can be passed along to consumers, DOTMed News reported. The tax was expected to raise $20 billion, but manufacturers now believe the true cost is an estimated $30 billion.

IBISWorld reported that the healthcare industry increased at an average annual rate of 2.7 percent to reach $677.3 billion in 2011, and this number could top $850 billion by 2015.
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