The Australian, a popular newspaper that serves Australian citizens, reported yesterday that GlaxoSmithKline Australia are going to reveal how much money it pays to doctor's research institutes and health groups.
For years many Australian advocates have been calling for more transparency with regard to the way payments are made to the above from pharmaceutical companies.
Should Glaxo be commended for this recent move? Well, not really, they, it appears, are only doing this because of mounting public pressure - if in fact they do it at all.
The Australian reports that GSK Australia general manager Deborah Waterhouse said:
"Whether we go to the level of individual physician data being published on our website, we need to consult . . . and understand what is possible from a privacy standpoint."
While they are at it they should not only disclose payments, they should disclose the hospitality [dine and dash] made to doctor's. A doctor is wined and dined at an expensive hotel solely on the premise that he/she prescribe more products from the pharmaceutical company. This happens with all pharmaceutical companies and should also be made transparent.
It remains to be seen if Glaxo stick to their word. The cynic in me believes they will only release whatever paints them in a good light.
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