Alexander: Medical Device Tax Repeal “Critical To Creating Jobs” For Memphis And Tennessee

Thursday, May 2, 2013

At a press conference in front of Onyx Medical Corp., U.S. Senator Lamar Alexander (R-Tn.) said he’d push for a repeal of the medical device tax and press the Food and Drug Administration to lessen regulatory burdens on the industry, calling it “critical to creating jobs for Memphis and Tennessee.”

“This burdensome tax on medical devices is already costing Tennesseans jobs and hurting a crucial Memphis industry by increasing costs, stifling investment and ultimately driving up prices for patients in need of medical help,” Senator Alexander said. “Memphis has become an important center for medical devices, and the industry ranks as Tennessee’s top export. Repealing the Obamacare tax on medical devices – devices that save lives – is one of the most important things we can do to create good jobs for Tennesseans.”

The medical device tax, passed as part of President Obama’s health care law, places a 2.3 percent excise tax on medical device manufacturers. Tennessee’s Department of Economic and Community Development has identified medical device manufacturers as among the state’s most important exports, with U.S. Census data showing its $2.1 billion in 2012 ranks at the top of all state exports by dollar value.

Senator Alexander is a cosponsor of legislation to repeal the tax. He also supported a successful amendment to the Senate budget resolution in March, which demonstrated bipartisan support for repeal.

Senator Alexander’s remarks came before a tour of Onyx, which makes materials such as screws and wiring for medical devices. The senator also discussed the importance of battling over-regulation of the industry by the Food and Drug Administration, and working to make sure sequester cuts don’t negatively impact the use of federal money that the industry is still paying in full.

While Onyx does not pay the medical device tax, its customers that make medical devices do, putting price pressure on Onyx to deal with the cost of the tax and harming investment in its industry.

Senator Alexander said, “Onyx is a success story in an industry facing hardship at the hands of Washington.”

He cited as another example Smith & Nephew, a medical device manufacturer with a Tennessee presence that has announced it laid off nearly 100 employees in Tennessee and Massachusetts as it deals with the tax. The Medical Device Manufacturers Association has also reported thousands of lost jobs in the industry.


Discussion On "Ebola, Treating Viruses And Vaccines" Slated For CHEO Meeting On April 19

Dr. Charles Adams, MD has long been studying viral illnesses and has an Integrative toolbag of treatments. He plans to share this knowledge at the Complimentary Health Education Organization's April meeting, Sunday from 2-4 p.m. at Nutrition World on Vance Road, downstairs in the Speaker's room. According to Dr . Adams, Ebola hijacks the immune system and suppresses it. Once ... (click for more)

Belinda Foy Receives Terri Farmer Award

Belinda Foy has been named the 2015 recipient of the Terri Farmer award by the Craniofacial Foundation of America (CFA).  A certified hand therapist and physical therapist, Ms. Foy and her puppet, Lambchop, have volunteered with children with disabilities at the CFA’s annual Dreams Can Come True Camp since 2011. She said she has witnessed amazing transformations, both physically ... (click for more)

Prominent Business, Civic Leader, And Philanthropist Scotty Probasco Dies At 86

Prominent Chattanooga business, civic leader and philanthropist Scotty Probasco has died at the age of 86. Scotty, as he was affectionately greeted by most of Chattanooga, was known for his modesty, generosity, dependability, and unswerving loyalty. “Great work” was always on the tip of his tongue – a manifestation of his joyous humility. He was a man of high ideals, of kind ... (click for more)

River Flood Warning Issued For Lookout Creek

There has been a river flood warning issued for Lookout Creek. Here is the warning from the National Weather Service: THE NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE IN PEACHTREE CITY HAS ISSUED A FLOOD WARNING FOR THE LOOKOUT CREEK NEAR NEW ENGLAND. FROM THIS MORNING UNTIL THIS AFTERNOON. AT 11AM SUNDAY THE STAGE WAS 11.7 FEET...AND RISING. FLOOD STAGE IS 12 FEET. THE CREEK WILL ... (click for more)

Proud Of Hometown Boy Turned Global Leader, Bob Corker

Time Magazine has it right.  Not only is Chattanooga’s own U.S. Senator Bob Corker one of the “100 Most Influential People in the World,” but he is probably now the most prominent leader in the history of our city.   At a time of extreme frustration with Washington and Congress in general, Bob continues to rise above the division and rancor to build consensus and solve ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: Great Work, Ol’ Pro!

Years ago I was lucky enough to be the seatmate of Scotty Probasco on an airplane bound for somewhere and he taught me a word that has helped me be a much better person than I ever thought I could. We were already swell friends, since he’d watched me grow up at First Presbyterian Church every Sunday with his kids, and he liked some of the stuff I tried to write back then. So ... (click for more)