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NY D82375

September 29, 1998

CLA-2-94:RR:NC:SP:233 D82375


TARIFF NO.: 9402.90.0020

Mr. Leslie W. Polgar
The A.W. Fenton Company Inc.
6565 Eastland Road
Cleveland, OH 44142-1388

RE: The tariff classification of I.V. stands from China.

Dear Mr. Polgar:

In your letter dated September 4, 1998, on behalf of Invacare Corporation, you requested a tariff classification ruling.

The submitted literature depicts the following I.V. stands to be imported:

Model HE 60220000 Economic Steel I.V. Stand 2 Prong, Model HE 60230010 Economic Steel I.V. Stand 2 Prong with Detachable Design, and
Model HE 60230110 Economic Steel I.V. Stand 4 Prong with Detachable Design.

The I.V. stands are designed specifically for health care applications. They are used for the administration of intravenous medication or fluids.

The applicable subheading for the I.V. stands will be 9402.90.0020, Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States (HTS), which provides for medical, surgical, dental or veterinary furniture...; parts of the foregoing articles: other; other. The rate of duty will be 1.1% ad valorem.

We do not agree with your claim that these items are also classified in HTS 9817.00.96. We agree that these items are designed specifically for health care applications and are presumably often used by or on behalf of those with handicaps. However, that is not sufficient. Note in particular HRL 559916, dated May 8, 1997, which excluded patient hospital gowns from 9817.00.96.

You indicate that your items are cheaper and flimsier than those that you believe are normally used in hospitals. Even if this is true, we do not consider cheapening a product to be, by itself, sufficient to establish that it is "specially designed or adapted for the use or benefit of the blind or other physically or mentally handicapped persons."

You state, without any independent evidence, that your products will be principally used for in-home care. Even if this were established, we do not accept your inference that all devices used for in-home care are for the permanently or chronically handicapped. Many patients recover from illness and surgery at home, and they or the in-home nursing provider often use several medical devices. We note that you have not even attempted to state what handicaps apply to the users of your products.

You state, "Invacare markets exclusively to the home care and continued care populations through dealer networks that specialize in those market segments." However, this seems to be contradicted by the fact that even the back side of the one-page flyer you have sent features Examination Stools and Steel Examination Racks. These are items found typically in doctors' offices and hospitals, and they have no special relation to continued care as opposed to any other kind of medical care. You also have provided no evidence that the patients who are the end-users of these products procure them by purchasing them in outlets specializing in provisions for the handicapped instead of in regular medical supply stores or by renting them, which is more typical for articles used in temporary situations.

This ruling is being issued under the provisions of Part 177 of the Customs Regulations (19 C.F.R. 177).

A copy of the ruling or the control number indicated above should be provided with the entry documents filed at the time this merchandise is imported. If you have any questions regarding the ruling, contact National Import Specialist Lawrence Mushinske at 212-466-5739.


Robert B. Swierupski

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