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Trump's tariffs and the potential impact on medical costs

by Philip F. Jacobus, CEO | April 04, 2018
The Trump administration is planning to place a 25 percent tariff on roughly 1,300 Chinese products including medical equipment.

If you work in the medical equipment industry, you're probably aware that some MR magnets, some CT scanners, some ultrasound and X-ray machines are made in China by various manufacturers, many of which are made by U.S. and European manufacturers.

This will no doubt increase the price of equipment. To some extent, these tariffs will drive up the cost of healthcare.

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If an American manufacturer has components made in China as part of their manufacturing process, it will have to drive up the price of that equipment.

In addition, China is intending to place tariffs on some of our products, which will make it even harder to sell U.S. products in China, as if it was not hard enough already.

I, for one, am not in favor of tariffs. There are so many companies, manufacturing so many different components that are part of so many different subsystems, that go into so many different machines around the world, that it is almost impossible to create a tariff without it coming back to haunt you.

If you look at the negative financial impact that Brexit has had in the UK, you will get an indication of what could happen here.

Please, let's measure twice before we cut.

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About Phil Jacobus

Phil Jacobus has been involved in health care since 1977, when he visited China to sell equipment. He has done business in 35 countries and still travels extensively. Phil is active in charity, helps rural clinics and always tries to help DOTmed users when he can.

Phil is a member of AHRA, HFMA, AAMI and the Cryogenic Society of America. He has contributed to a number of magazines and journals and has addressed trade groups.

Phil's proudest achievement is that he has been happily married to his wife Barbara since 1989, who helped him found DOTmed in 1998.

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