In August 2013, the Sunshine Act was passed. This new law put heavy restrictions on the marketing and sales practices of manufacturers of drugs, medical devices, and biologicals. The act required these companies to report any money and the value of items given to physicians and hospitals. This was enacted to increase transparency for patients to the extent of relationships between physicians and medical manufacturing companies.
According to Celgene, the Sunshine Act defines a “physician” as any of the following types of professionals who are legally authorized to practice:
- Doctor of Medicine
- Doctor of Osteopathy
- Doctor of Dentistry
- Doctor of Dental Surgery
- Doctor of Podiatry
- Doctor of Optometry
- Doctor of Chiropractic Medicine
Medical residents, nurse practitioners and office staff are NOT included in the definition of Covered Recipients.”
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Essentially, medical manufacturers are now required to be transparent. A few examples of what they are now obligated to report are, “consulting fees; compensation for services other than consulting, including serving as faculty or as a speaker at an event other than a continuing education program; honoraria; gifts; food and beverages; entertainment; travel and lodging; research activities; charitable contributions; royalties or licenses; current or prospective ownership or investment interests; compensation for serving as faculty or as a speaker for certain continuing education programs; grants; space rental; or teaching hospital facility fees.”
However, there are a few exceptions which include, “payments or other transfers of value of less than $10, except when the total annual value of payments or other transfers of value provided to a physician exceeds $100; educational materials that directly benefit patients or are intended for patient use.:
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Though the Sunshine Act changed an immense amount of variables for medical manufacturers, these exceptions may present them with new opportunities. The Focus glass is an 8 oz drinking glass that doubles as a magnification device. This glass is qualified as a patient education device under the Sunshine Act and is the perfect place for branding. Learn more about this product and how it may benefit you.