Flourishing In the Sunshine: Disclosure as a new Commercial Advantage
This article was originally published in RPM Report
Orthopedic device manufacturers are out ahead of the drug industry in adapting to new payment disclosure laws. One company, Stryker, has embraced the requirement wholeheartedly and may have found a way to make the listing a benefit to doctors and patients.
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Pharmaceutical companies understandably feel that critics of their marketing practices don’t always tell the whole story. But they cannot afford to ignore consumer attitudes about their relationships with providers. Consumers are sending a clear message: Sunshine isn’t enough; the relationships need to change.
Encouraged by Nov. 4 election results that increased the number of Democrats in the Senate, Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Patrick Leahy, D-Vt., will reintroduce his controversial patent reform bill in 2009, committee staff said
Mandating disclosures of payments or gifts made by device and drug firms to health care providers, perhaps using as a model the previously introduced Physician Payments Sunshine Act, should be part of any health care reform package, states Sen. Max Baucus, D-Mont., in a Nov. 12 1white paper intended to kick off a national health reform process focusing on a public-private plan to cover all Americans. A broad-based reform package also should include the establishment of a nonprofit, private comparative effectiveness institute like that proposed in legislation sponsored by Baucus earlier this year, according to the Senate Finance Committee Chairman. Reform legislation also needs to consider hospital-physician gainsharing models that "strike the appropriate balance between thoughtful incentives for coordination of care and careful protections against financial conflicts-of-interest that could harm quality of care.