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Medical Company Lays Off Almost 100 People due to Obamacare


By zzyzzx   Follow   Mon, 4 Feb 2013, 8:22am PST   449 views   5 comments
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http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/02/02/smith-nephew-obamacare-layoff_n_2607112.html

Medical technology company, Smith & Nephew, announced Thursday that it would be letting go of almost 100 workers at its plants in Tennessee and Massachusetts. The company, which makes orthopedic reconstruction products, is blaming 2.3 percent excise tax on medical devices in President Obama's health care law for the layoffs, according to Fox13 News.

“The nearly $30 billion tax on medical devices that took effect Jan. 1, 2013, has impacted a number of companies across the U.S.,” the company said in a statement to Fox13 News.

Medical companies lobbied to get the tax, which is levied on medical devices implanted by professionals, repealed, according to Reuters. The tax is expected to raise $29 billion in government revenue through 2022.

Joe Metzger, the company's senior vice president of corporate communications, told the Memphis Business Journal that the firm is "not immune from this added expense burden."

Smith & Nephew, which is based in London and has a global reach, employs "more than 11,000 [people] in 90 countries," according to the Washington Times.

The company is not the first to blame Obamacare for layoffs and other cuts in spending.

In November, Stryker, a global manufacturer of medical devices and equipment, had announced that it was cutting 1,170 jobs in anticipation of the health care law and the medical device excise tax.

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curious2   Mon, 4 Feb 2013, 8:25am PST   Share   Quote   Permalink   Like (2)   Dislike (1)     Comment 1

The legislation increases the tax on vaccines too, in order to subsidize more pills.

Homeboy   Mon, 4 Feb 2013, 3:22pm PST   Share   Quote   Permalink   Like (3)   Dislike (1)     Comment 2

What bullshit. Here's the real reason for the layoffs:

FOX13 News also found documents from a 2012 ruling in a case between Smith & Nephew and the U.S. Security and Exchange Commission. The company received a multi-million dollar fine after a bribery investigation revealed that starting in 1997, it used off-the-books money from its distributor in Greece for cash incentives to encourage providers to buy smith & nephew products.

FOX13 News asked a Smith & Nephew representative, on top of the medical device tax, how the SEC fine of $16.8 million does not impact the recent layoffs. The spokesman simply replied, "The Med Device tax is a yearly tax."

The company also saw an eight-percent decrease in its recent third quarter profits. Smith & Nephew took a hit after a hip replacement recall in June 2012.

As for the layoffs, Smith & Nephew says they are "providing the affected employees with a comprehensive severance package and outplacement support."

Read more: http://www.myfoxmemphis.com/story/20929405/smith-and-nephew-lays-off-100-blames-obamacare#ixzz2K0TSMcmj

zzyzzx   Mon, 4 Feb 2013, 10:14pm PST   Share   Quote   Permalink   Like   Dislike     Comment 3

KarlRoveIsScum says

For anyone that really wants to swallow this B.S., here are some 2012 3rd quarter financial announcements from Smith &Nephew: (from Reuters)

Q3 revenue $952 million (company consensus $971 million) * Q3 trading profit $207 million (company consensus $212 million) * Trading profit margin up 190 bps to 21.7% as efficiency benefits come through * Do not see any change in the outlook for the group for 2012

Another quite profitable company whose management wants more, and now has a convenient scapegoat to which to shift the blame.

Unfortunately that type of info is often irrelevant, since very profitable companies move manufacturing operations overseas in order to reduce costs, even when they are already very profitable.

sirmajdalot   Mon, 4 Feb 2013, 10:27pm PST   Share   Quote   Permalink   Like   Dislike     Comment 4

KarlRoveIsScum says

Another quite profitable company whose management wants more, and now has a convenient scapegoat to which to shift the blame.

That's exactly what I was thinking while reading this but did not have the sufficient data. Additionally,

"In November, Stryker, a global manufacturer of medical devices and equipment, had announced that it was cutting 1,170 jobs in anticipation of the health care law and the medical device excise tax."

Just in anticipation alone..

sirmajdalot   Mon, 4 Feb 2013, 10:30pm PST   Share   Quote   Permalink   Like   Dislike     Comment 5

Homeboy says

What bullshit. Here's the real reason for the layoffs:

Good for you. I'm glad I'm not the only one who was skeptical about this whole article. I don't think the Obamacare is the best thing in the world but I know all these companies aren't REALLY affected like they claim they are.

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