Thursday, September 6, 2007

Grassley, Kohl say public should know when pharmaceutical makers give money to doctors

WASHINGTON — U.S. Senators Chuck Grassley (R-IA) and Herb Kohl (D-WI) are introducing legislation to require manufacturers of pharmaceutical drugs, devices and biologics to disclose the amount of money they give to doctors through payments, gifts, honoraria, travel and other means.

“Right now the public has no way to know whether a doctor’s been given money that might affect prescribing habits,” Grassley said. “This bill is about letting the sun shine in so that the public can know. Whether it’s dinner at a restaurant or tens of thousands of dollars or more in fees and travel, patients shouldn’t be in the dark about whether their doctors are getting money from drug and device makers.”

“At our June hearing, the pharmaceutical industry told the Aging Committee that they believe their practices are above-board. If that is the case, full disclosure will only serve to prove them right. If that is not the case, full disclosure will bring their influence-peddling out from the shadows. Either way, patients win,” Kohl said.

Grassley’s floor statement about today’s legislation is below, along with a copy of Kohl’s statement from his Aging Committee hearing. A separate Grassley floor statement on this subject, delivered in August, is posted along with this news release at in the Grassley press releases and at Information on the Aging Committee hearing can be found at

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