Boston Herald/State House News Service, December 29, 2011

Despite strong signals that Massachusetts Gov. Deval Patrick, the House and the Senate would support peeling back parts of a three-year-old ban on gifts from pharmaceutical companies to doctors ? a policy that critics say is strangling the restaurant business and killing jobs ? 2011 is coming to a close without action. But efforts to dismantle components of the ban are poised to reemerge in 2012 and received the fresh backing of a panel of lawmakers last week, potentially teeing up the issue for consideration during debate on a major health care system overhaul eyed for next year.
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