Transparency of Outside Activities: Registries of Industry-Faculty Relationships
UTHealth faculty and researchers should be aware that the Patient Protection and Affordable Health Care Act includes new "Sunshine Provisions," requiring pharmaceutical, medical device, biological, and medical supply manufacturers to begin reporting to the federal government the payments they make to physicians and teaching hospitals. Additionally, the law requires the Secretary of Health and Human Services to make this payment and ownership interest information available on a publicly accessible, searchable, and downloadable website. As a result, manufacturers' payments to consultants, researchers, and others; physician ownership interests held in a manufacturer or Group Purchasing Organization; and important information related to such payments and disclosures, will now be a matter of public record.
The scope of reportable payments is broad and includes consulting fees, compensation for non-consulting services, honoraria, gifts, entertainment, food, travel, education, research, charitable contributions, royalties or licenses, current or prospective ownership or investment interests, direct compensation for serving as faculty or as a speaker for a medical education program, and grants.
Applicable manufacturers and applicable group purchasing organizations must begin to collect the required data on August 1, 2013 and report the data to CMS (Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services) by March 31, 2014. However, some pharmaceutical companies have already begun to voluntarily post payments to healthcare professionals, including: