Tuesday 16 March 2010

The EU says no to financial incentives for prescribers

The European Court of Juistice advocate general Niilo Jääskinen har issued an opinion that condemns financial incentives for prescribers also by state authorities. The background is that the Association of the British Pharmaceutical Industry (ABPI) has complained about the prescribing incentive schemes the UK Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency in the UK runs. The incentive scheme reward doctors for prescribing specific named medicinal products. This would be against the ban on promotion of medicinal products by gift, pecuniary advantage or benefits in kind to persons qualified to prescribe them. Not uncommon that the authorities try to regulate what the doctors prescribe – in Sweden so called ethical lists are compiled by the regions. Positive and negative lists are still allowed though according to the advocate general. I would assume that this means that the penalty system in Germany is ok. It seems that it’s not forcing the doctors to prescribe the medicines preferred that is illegal – no carrots only sticks…

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