WASHINGTON, D.C. – Stephen J. Ubl, president and CEO of the Advanced Medical Technology Association (AdvaMed), issued the following statement today after providing written comments to bipartisan leadership on the House’s health care reform bill that will be considered by the full House:
(PressZoom) - WASHINGTON, D.C. – Stephen J. Ubl, president and CEO of the Advanced Medical Technology Association (AdvaMed), issued the following statement today after providing written comments to bipartisan leadership on the House’s health care reform bill that will be considered by the full House:
“AdvaMed commends the House leadership for moving forward legislation to reform the nation’s health care system. Our industry has long supported comprehensive health care reform that provides quality, affordable care for all Americans.
“The House bill includes a number of thoughtful provisions designed to change the incentives in the health care system and, over time, to improve the quality of care and bend the curve on cost growth. While we support much of what is in the bill, there are provisions that are of great concern to the medical technology and diagnostics industry.
“AdvaMed appreciates the decision by House leaders to limit the amount of the tax on medical devices, and that the proposed tax is transparent and deductible and would be implemented beginning in 2013 instead of 2010. However, a number of additional design features are important. We recommend that the tax be differentiated by FDA product class to recognize the diversity of medical device products and the thousands of companies that develop and manufacture them. Small manufacturers with less than $100 million in annual gross receipts should be exempted from the tax, perhaps through a rebate mechanism. Finally, with diverse companies of all shapes and sizes that produce as many as 80,000 unique products, protections should be put in place to make adjustments if the 2.5% tax rate generates more revenue than anticipated.
“AdvaMed supports comparative effectiveness research and the government’s role in generating such research. However, provisions are needed to improve transparency and stakeholder input, and to ensure that the research focuses on clinical effectiveness rather than cost effectiveness.
“We oppose the proposed national medical device registry. It duplicates existing FDA authorities, will be costly and burdensome for both the FDA and industry, and will not improve public health.
“AdvaMed is concerned with the proposed benefit package centralized decision-making process, which gives the Secretary the authority to direct private insurers in the health exchange to deny coverage for specific medical devices, drugs and procedures, even if they are safe and effective. We believe this excessive centralization could inappropriately limit the practice of medicine, constrain patient access, and stifle development of new therapies.
“Bundling payments for inpatient and post-acute care and accountable care organization (ACO) models hold great promise for encouraging greater coordination and collaboration among providers to improve patient outcomes and reduce costs. We support the policy in the House bill to first thoroughly test these approaches through demonstrations or pilots before changing payment policy. The legislation should include safeguards to protect patient access to care and to avoid discouraging the adoption of promising new technologies.
“As in the case of other payment reforms such as ACOs and bundling, it is also important that value-based purchasing provisions be implemented in a way that encourages rather than inhibits adoption of new, valuable technologies.
“We support the bill’s proposal for a uniform, comprehensive national system for the reporting of industry payments to physicians. However, we are concerned with the partial federal preemption standard in the bill which would allow states to require companies to adhere to additional reporting standards.
“Finally, we are very concerned with the severe cuts to imaging services and the productivity adjustment reductions for durable medical equipment (DME). These reductions come on the heels of recent draconian cuts to these areas in previously enacted legislation.
“We look forward to working with the bipartisan leaders in Congress to craft a health care reform bill that will improve the quality of patient care, reduce costs, and provide for continued advancements in medical treatments.”
Letter as sent to the U.S. of Representatives here.
# # #
This news item was released on 2009-11-12. Please make sure to visit the official company or organization web site to learn more about the original release date. See our disclaimer for more information.
(c) PressZoom.com - Press Release Distribution Service - All Rights Reserved