Pfizer Paid Doctors, Hospitals $35 Million in Last Half of 2009

Publication: USA Today

Author: Linda A. Johnson

03/31/2010 - Pfizer paid doctors and teaching hospitals a total of $35 million in the last half of 2009 for services ranging from speaking to other doctors about the company's products to running studies of its experimental drugs.

The world's biggest drugmaker by revenue disclosed details Wednesday of its payments to about 4,500 doctors and other health professionals. Unlike rivals who have made some disclosures, Pfizer included figures on the considerable payments made to doctors running human tests of its drugs.

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Data posted by three other drugmakers so far has not been so user-friendly, said Allan Coukell, director of the Pew Prescription Project, a consumer group focused on safety and access to information about prescription drugs. He said other companies also have not disclosed data on payments for working on patient drug tests.

He hopes more companies make disclosures before they are required.

"We've always emphasized that we do need physicians to work with the industry on clinical trials, but that it needs to be transparent," Coukell said.

Read the full article Pfizer Paid Doctors, Hospitals $35 Million in Last Half of 2009 on USA Today's Web site.

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