WASHINGTON, Sept. 30 — The government warned pharmaceutical companies today that they must not offer any financial incentives to doctors, pharmacists or other health care professionals to prescribe or recommend particular drugs, or to switch patients from one medicine to another.
The government informed the industry that many practices commonly used in the marketing and sale of prescription drugs could run afoul of federal fraud and abuse laws.
Specifically, the government said that drug makers could not offer incentive payments or other "tangible benefits" to encourage or reward the prescribing or purchase of particular drugs by doctors, health plans or companies that manage drug benefits for employers and insurers.
The new standards, the first of their kind, were issued by Janet Rehnquist, inspector general of the Department of Health and Human Services, as guidance to the pharmaceutical industry.
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Original Source, NY Times