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Physician Groups React to Report on Pharma Payments to Providers

Jeff Elliott for HealthLeaders Media, October 25, 2010

Specifically addressing formal medical education scenarios, Ralston told HealthLeaders that much of the onus resides on conference organizers to be alert to conflicts of interest and "develop and enforce explicit policies that maintain complete control of program planning, content and delivery."

"Backgrounds have not always been thoroughly vetted and hopefully this information will help those offering educational content develop processes to keep this from happening in the future," he said.

Noted in the study and accompanying article published by ProPublica is that payout findings only covered seven pharmaceutical companies—including giants AstraZeneca, Eli Lilly, Merck and Pfizer—that voluntarily made physician payment information public.

These relationships are expected to come under greater scrutiny as the more than 70 drug companies operating in the United States are forced to release physician payment information by March 2013 in accordance with healthcare reform mandates.

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1 comments on "Physician Groups React to Report on Pharma Payments to Providers"


J. Kuriyan (10/25/2010 at 9:26 AM)
Just because it is legal doesn't make it right. By raising the "bar" for influence peddling and bribery, these self-policing professional organizations bring discredit to the entire profession. I look forward to health reform's Comparative Effectiveness Research Institute to provide unbiased and balanced opinions on medications, devices and treatments and escape the tyranny of vendors.