September 16, 2008
GSK joins the grant reporting game
GlaxoSmithKline will join Pfizer and Eli Lilly in reporting its educational and charitable grants.
The company will provide quarterly reports on grants to hospitals, teaching institutions, managed care organizations, professional associations, patient advocacy groups and CME companies starting in February.
“GSK sponsors a range of third-party independent educational programs to increase awareness and knowledge of health-related issues,” said GSK's then-president, North American Pharmaceuticals Chris Viehbacher in a statement. “By publishing information about our grants, we transparently identify the support we offer for independent and quality education to improve the delivery of healthcare for patients.”
Lilly began reporting its grants publicly in May of 2007, and Pfizer followed suit a year later. In March, AstraZeneca vowed to publish grant information biannually.
In April, responding to an inquiry by Sen. Charles Grassley (R-IA) demanding to know whether they would follow Lilly's lead, several companies, including Bristol-Myers Squibb, Medtronic and Boston Scientific, also agreed to begin making information on educational grants and payments to physicians public, while others, including Abbott, Amgen and Merck, told the senator they were working on it.
Only one of the firms Grassley wrote—Schering-Plough—declined outright.