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Pfizer Discloses Doc Payments

Posted by Jane Akre
Monday, April 05, 2010 10:41 AM EST
Category: Major Medical
Tags: Pfizer, Drugmaker, Physicians, Conflict-of-Interest, Merck


IMAGE SOURCE: copyright iStockphoto image

Drug giant, Pfizer, is now disclosing what it pays to doctors for consulting, speaking, clinical research, and promotion.

The cut-off value appears to be $25.

The Pfizer Web site contains total payments of $35 million received by 4,500 health professionals for meals, education and speaking fees, which average $3,400.

Pfizer joins GlaxoSmithKline, Merck, Eli Lilly, Cephalon in increasing transparency. Pharmalot, reports that Pfizer and Cephalon disclose in order to satisfy a Corporate Integrity Agreement, concerning the off-label marketing of drugs.

Merck appears to be disclosing payments only for speaking, leaving a number of other potential financial arrangements undisclosed.

The Physician Payments Sunshine provision requires drug makers to disclose all gifts and payments to doctors and teaching hospitals starting in 2010. The mandatory starting date for reporting is March 31, 2013, and requires the data must be electronic, searchable, and downloadable.

Pharmalot’s Ed Silverman interviews the director of the Pew Prescription Project, Allan Coukell, who says he likes the sunshine provision and its low threshold for reporting of $10.

He expressed concern if drug companies find a way around the reporting requirement that might include calling it instead “product development arrangements.”

On the negative side, Coukell says the House counterpart of the health care reform bill included more potential recipients including nurses, nurse practitioners and pharmacists.

Pfizer says it will post its next report on March 31, 2011 and will be posted quarterly. #

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