Allergan fights senate bill to tax beauty injections

By Simon Pitman

- Last updated on GMT

Related tags Plastic surgery United states congress Health care

Allergan, maker of Botox anti-wrinkle injections, says it plans to fight a US senate bill designed to tax cosmetic procedures to pay for proposed health reforms.

The $1 trillion health reform proposal provides that individuals opting for elective cosmetic surgeries and related treatments will have to pay an additional 5 percent tax as a means of paying for the bill.

However, companies that market products and treatments for this category together with cosmetic surgeons, are up in arms and say they plan to fight the bill.

J&J and Allergan take up the fight

Big players such as Johnson & Johnson, which makes implants for cosmetics procedures have already vented its displeasure, while California-based pharmaceutical company Allergan has also put in the oar in relation to its top-selling Botox injections.

Indeed, media coverage of the story has already coined the phrase ‘Botax’, with analysts estimating that it would help raise $6 billion to pay for the extended medical care proposed by the bill.

Allergan spokesperson Caroline Van Hove said in a press statement that the proposed tax was ‘unnecessarily punitive’​ towards people who simply want to enhance their appearance.

Allergan sales through economic downturn

Allergan has posted surprisingly good financial results in the face of the global financial downturn, partly due to continued strong sales of Botox, with net sales for the quarter ending in September rising 4.2 percent to $1.13bn.

Industry analysts have said that continued demand for Botox injections in recent months has been partly driven by the fact that newly unemployed individuals are seeking to enhance their appearance and maintain youthful looks.

Likewise, both product suppliers and cosmetics surgeons have jumped on this statistic, claiming that hard working individuals may be needlessly penalized for trying to enhance their employment prospects.

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