Transparency in healthcare funding

    Congress and consumer advocates are pressuring pharmaceutical companies to reveal how much money they give to healthcare organizations. This week a local company says it will begin disclosing that information next year. From WHYY’s health and science desk, Kerry Grens reports.

    Congress and consumer advocates are pressuring pharmaceutical companies to reveal how much money they give to healthcare organizations. This week a local company says it will begin disclosing that information next year. From WHYY’s health and science desk, Kerry Grens reports.

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    Transcript

    GlaxoSmithKline will publicize its contributions to healthcare advocacy organizations, hospitals, and continuing medical education groups. Sarah Alspach, the company’s director of media relations, says the move is part of a trend.

    Alspach: I think that this is something that the entire industry recognizes the need to improve transparency and we’ve seen a number of other companies and I think we’re all going towards really making this information available to the public.

    Consumer health groups like Families USA have been urging companies to come clean. Marc Steinberg, the organization’s deputy director for health policy, says the next step will be to follow the trail of the donation.

    Steinberg: One of the thigns that we’re going to want to see from this release as well as others is how is the pharmaceutical industry funding groups that influence the political process and promote the goals of the pharmaceutical industry.

    GlaxoSmithKline will release quarterly reports beginning in February 2009.

    Kerry Grens, WHYY news.

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