Healthcare Policy

Healthcare Policy 17(3) February 2022 : 42-48.doi:10.12927/hcpol.2022.26729
Data Matters

Pharmaceutical Company Payments to Healthcare Professionals and Healthcare Organizations in Canada: An Observational Study

Joel Lexchin

Abstract

Starting in 2017, retroactive to 2016, Innovative Medicines Canada (IMC) – the lobby group representing most of the large research-based pharmaceutical companies operating in Canada – initiated a voluntary system for companies to annually report on payments that they make to healthcare providers and organizations. Over the five years that the system has been in operation, 10 companies reported spending almost $345 million. The largest payments were to healthcare providers. Four companies spent more than $10 million in one or more years. The names of people and organizations receiving the payments and their purpose are not disclosed. Even if IMC makes disclosures mandatory for all its members, those reforms will not be enough to ensure transparency of company payments.

 

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