Cardiac-device maker St. Jude Medical, St. Paul, Minn., has canceled its membership in the Advanced Medical Technology Association, or AdvaMed, in dispute over the lobby group's position on a devicemaker tax included in both the House and Senate healthcare reform bills.
St. Jude Medical quits AdvaMed over tax stance
According to a letter of resignation sent to AdvaMed by St. Jude Medical Chairman, President and CEO Daniel Starks, the devicemaker has taken issue with AdvaMed's decision to lobby for a tiered tax that would make manufacturers of high-tech, high-profit-margin devices such as the ones made by St. Jude responsible for a larger percentage of the tax than low-tech devicemakers.
“The structure of the medical-device fee under discussion by Congress is an area where there is strong dissent and conflicting opinions within the AdvaMed membership,” Starks wrote in a letter announcing his resignation from the AdvaMed board and the company's membership withdrawal. “We feel it is inappropriate for AdvaMed to advocate for a specific policy that economically advantages a portion of its membership at the expense of other members.”
In a statement, AdvaMed officials called St. Jude's membership resignation regrettable, and said that its board overwhelmingly approved the tiered-tax recommendation. “St. Jude disagreed with one element of those principles and resigned its membership.”
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