The ABPI has today published for the first time details of payments or benefits in kind – made to doctors, nurses and pharmacists, as well as other health professionals and healthcare organisations in the UK on a publicly accessible database - Disclosure UK.
Please see our six month review of Disclosure UK figures, published in March 2017, to report on the most up-to-date data analysis for 2015.
This new database, available to download on the ABPI website (www.disclosureuk.org.uk), shows payments from 109 pharmaceutical companies in the UK (54 ABPI member companies and 55 non-member companies).
The data shows that in 2015, industry spent a total of £340.3m on working with health professionals and organisations, of which £229.3m (67%) is for activities related to the research and development of new medicines.
The remaining £111m (33%) of non-research and development activities is grouped into payments made to individual healthcare professionals and healthcare organisations. These are as follows:
Typically an estimated 70% of individual healthcare professionals are giving their consent for this information to be disclosed on a named basis.
Companies spent an estimated average of £1,550 per healthcare professional and around £9,506 per healthcare organisation.
Individual recipients of the above payments can be searched on the database by a number of criteria including the name of the doctor, nurse, pharmacist, healthcare professional or organisation and their professional address.
The average amount invested per company is around £3.1m. 84% of companies reported total investments of under £5 million. Companies that paid more than £5 million spent, on average, 71% on research activities.
Mike Thompson, Chief Executive for the ABPI, said: "This is a milestone moment for transparency in our industry and for the vital partnerships we have with health professionals and organisations across the UK. These partnerships matter and help our industry bring the right medicine to the right patient at the right time so we can improve quality of life and, in many cases, save lives. Getting advice from doctors, nurses and health professionals across the NHS helps us do this – we can't do it alone. We believe it's right we pay for that expertise and insight, as this is work which health professionals undertake often in addition to their day job in the NHS.
"We're committed to transparency – we believe it's right that the public has the opportunity to see some of the detail behind how we work with doctors, nurses, pharmacists and organisations to ensure life-enhancing medicines are developed for the patients who need them. Today, is an important step in sharing as much as of that information as we can."
The publication of these data are now an annual requirement of the ABPI's Code of Practice for the UK Pharmaceutical Industry and it is also part of a Europe-wide transparency initiative that has seen 33 countries make public these payments and benefits in kind this year.
Notes to Editors
Analysis of consent to disclose by individual healthcare professionals on a named basis at 24 June 2016
The calculation for the estimated 70% of individual healthcare professionals giving their consent for information to be disclosed on a named basis was based on the average level of disclosure per company for each activity group. This calculation was made using the data available from 105 of the 109 companies. Companies who paid more individuals were given a higher average weighting compared to companies who paid fewer individuals. We have not taken partial disclosure into account in these calculations as the number of companies who have declared making these in their methodological notes is extremely low.
About Disclosure UK
The annual publication of payments and benefits in kind made to healthcare professionals and healthcare organisations is required for compliance with the 2016 ABPI Code of Practice for the Pharmaceutical Industry. All published data will be accessible on the central database for three years.
Research and development activities
Individual company spending on research and development activities related to healthcare professionals and healthcare organisations is disclosed in aggregate.
Clause 23.2 Research and Development Transfers of Value, ABPI Code of Practice for the Pharmaceutical Industry 2016 says:
For the purpose of disclosure research and development transfers of value are transfers of value to health professionals or healthcare organisations related to the planning or conduct of:
Costs that are subsidiary to these activities can be included in the aggregate amount.
In other words, this includes payments to healthcare organisations for health professionals in the NHS to carry out clinical research on behalf of industry.
The spend on research and development activities disclosed today reflects just a proportion of the pharmaceutical industry's overall investment in scientific research. The pharmaceutical industry currently invests more money into research and development than any other industry in the UK. In 2014 the industry invested £3.9 billion (http://bit.ly/292NCwJ) the development of safe and effective life-enhancing medicines.
This figure includes the majority of the costs associated with discovering and developing new medicines, and enhancing existing medicines. This includes:
RAND Europe guidance notes
Data from Disclosure UK is also available to download. To accurately analyse the data available and understand what conclusions can and can't be drawn, a set of guidance notes from RAND Europe is available here (www.disclosureuk.org.uk).
ABPI Press Office
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About the ABPI
The ABPI represents innovative research-based biopharmaceutical companies, large, medium and small, leading an exciting new era of biosciences in the UK.
Our industry, a major contributor to the economy of the UK, brings life-saving and life-enhancing medicines to patients. We represent companies supplying around 90 per cent of all medicines used by the NHS, and are researching and developing the majority of the current medicines pipeline, ensuring that the UK remains at the forefront of helping patients prevent and overcome diseases.
The ABPI is recognised by government as the industry body negotiating on behalf of the branded pharmaceutical industry, for statutory consultation requirements including the pricing scheme for medicines in the UK.