When Sharraine Franklin, a New York City health department worker, wanted to be nice to the driver of a double-parked truck who pulled away to let her out of a parking spot, she reflexively jumped out of her car and handed him a pen.
Squinting at the health department logo on the pen, the driver laughed and shouted: “New York City! New York City don’t give nothing away!”
Free pens — bearing the names of drugs like Viagra and Januvia rather than the letters NYC — litter doctors’ offices all across New York, part of an often-criticized strategy by drug company sales representatives known as detailers, who traditionally go from waiting room to waiting room giving gifts to entice doctors to prescribe their products.
. . .
'The idea of academic detailing programs — or I assume New York City’s public health program — is that your bottom line is promoting good practices, and not necessarily return to shareholders,' said Allan Coukell, director of the Pew Prescription Project, a nonprofit effort that focuses on prescription drug policy, drug effectiveness and safety."
- Date added:
- Apr 12, 2009
Persuading the Prescribers: Pharmaceutical Industry Marketing and its Influence on Physicians and Patients
In 2011, the pharmaceutical industry spent nearly $29 billion on drug promotion — more than $25 billion on marketing directly to physicians and almost $4 billion on advertising directly to consumers (mainly through television commercials). This multi-pronged approach is designed to promote its products by influencing doctors’ prescribing practices.
"Because conflict-of-interest issues are not confined to medical schools, the American Medical Student Assn. is expanding its influential grading system for such policies to more than 400 teaching hospitals."More info
"U.S. doctors are bracing for increased public scrutiny of the payments and gifts they receive from pharmaceutical and medical-device companies as a result of the new health law."More info
"The legislation requiring public disclosure of the financial relationships between healthcare vendors and physicians has been widely discussed in policy circles for years. Critics claimed payments for speaking, consulting, research or even the small trinkets and meals delivered during routine sales calls unduly influenced physician choices and inflated healthcare costs. To combat those effects, Congress required public reporting of those payments in a publicly accessible database. The legislation, labeled the Physician Payment Sunshine Act, was included in the 2010 healthcare reform law."More info
Prescription project director Danny Carlat identifies issues with the Physician Payments Sunshine Act requiring further clarification and guidance. Addressing those would ensure that manufacturers can appropriately implement the final rule, and enable consumers to benefit from transparency reports published by the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services.More info
Pew Comments on Centers for Medicaid and Medicare Services' Information Collection Activities Draft Guidance
The Pew Charitable Trusts appreciates this opportunity to submit comments to CMS's "Information Collection Activities" draft guidance. We suggest that both the research and non-research payment templates be modified in order to make it easier for consumers to identify which drugs, devices, biologicals, or medical supplies are associated with particular transfers of value.More info
One Step Closer to Medical Transparency: Pew's Analysis of the Final Rule for the Physician Payments Sunshine ActOn Feb. 1, 2013, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services published the final rule guiding implementation of the Physician Payments Sunshine Act, which Congress passed as part of the Affordable Care Act in March 2010 to increase transparency in the relationships between physicians and drug and medical device makers. Here are some of the highlights. More info
"The Obama administration issued a new rule this month that requires the makers of prescription drugs and other medical products to disclose what they pay doctors for various purposes, like consulting or speaking on behalf of the manufacturer. This overdue rule adds much-needed weight to previous, more limited disclosure requirements."More info
Allan Coukell, director of medical programs for The Pew Charitable Trusts, issued the following statement in response to the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services' final rule for implementing the Physician Payments Sunshine Act, which will bring transparency to the financial relationships between physicians and drug and medical device companies.More info
"Harmonizing conflict-of-interest standards will depend on the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services moving forward to implement the federal Sunshine law, which is now more than a year behind schedule. Industry, consumers and academic stakeholders are all waiting on CMS to issue a final rule."More info