Products that are regulated and taxed as medical devices include a wide range of machines and objects, including various scopes, scanners, tubing and pumps. iStockphoto hide caption

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With Special Tax Suspended, Medical Device Firms Reap Big Savings

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Hanna Barczyk for NPR

How Sound Reveals The Invisible Within Us

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Sen. Charles Grassley, R-Iowa, and a Democratic colleague have introduced a bill that would require drugmakers and medical device companies to disclose payments made to physician assistants and nurses who can prescribe their products. Brendan Smialowski/AFP/Getty Images hide caption

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Bayer HealthCare, of Whippany, N.J., brought Essure to market in 2002 as a nonsurgical alternative for women seeking sterilization. Bayer acknowledges the device can lead to complications, but says they are rare. Julio Cortez/AP hide caption

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Slum dwellers near Calcutta get their water from a municipal pipe. Water coming out of the tap on the left is for bathing and so is untreated. The blue Zimba chlorinator is hooked up to the tap on the right, which is used for drinking water. Courtesy of Suprio Das/Zimba hide caption

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Dr. Margaret Hamburg will have served almost six years as FDA commissioner by the time she leaves, far longer than the recent tenure for chiefs of the agency. J. David Ake/AP hide caption

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FDA Commissioner Hamburg Grappled With Global Challenges

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Joe Kiani, addresses the second-annual Patient Safety, Science & Technology Summit in January 2014. Courtesy of the Patient Safety Movement Foundation hide caption

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Proton beam therapy can precisely target tumors to avoid harming surrounding tissue, advocates say. Blythe Bernhard/St. Louis Post-Dispatch/MCT/Landov hide caption

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The MD Brush has an unusual grip that automatically angles the brush head at 45 degrees. Meredith Rizzo/NPR hide caption

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Build A Toothbrush, Change The World. Or Not

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