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White House Pushing Big Pharma to Report Payments to MDs

The Obama administration is laying the legal groundwork to strongly encourage (read: enforce) more transparency between pharmaceutical companies and doctors by requiring drugmakers to divulge the details of their monetary exchanges with M.D.s for various services and perks. –KA

The New York Times:

To head off medical conflicts of interest, the Obama administration is poised to require drug companies to disclose the payments they make to doctors for research, consulting, speaking, travel and entertainment.

Many researchers have found evidence that such payments can influence doctors’ treatment decisions and contribute to higher costs by encouraging the use of more expensive drugs and medical devices.

Consumer advocates and members of Congress say patients may benefit from the new standards, being issued by the government under the new health care law. Federal officials said the disclosures increased the likelihood that doctors would make decisions in the best interests of patients, without regard to the doctors’ financial interests.

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