MedTech Europe has agreed to phase out direct sponsorship of healthcare professionals to third-party medical conferences. After two years of work, Eucomed and EDMA codes of ethics have been updated and a single MedTech Europe Code of Ethical Business Practice has been established. On 2nd December, all Medtech Europe members voted at their Annual General Assembly to: –
- Introduce new industry support models for medical education of healthcare professionals.
- Phase out direct sponsoring of healthcare professionals to third-party medical conferences, as of 1 January 2018.
- Define, secure and frame educational grants in order to prevent misuse.
IMSTA supports these new measures and our Ethics & Compliance Group will meet early in the new year to discuss how best to integrate these changes into a new revised code of Ethical Business Practice for our members. The Ethics & Compliance Group Steering will develop a programme to assist members understand and build awareness of the new changes.
We would like to take this opportunity to bring your attention to our seasonal notice on hospitality and gifts, which this year would seem to be particularly relevant.
In an effort to promote compliance with the ethical business practices enshrined in IMSTA’s Code of Ethics, we are asking our member companies again not to engage in the traditional custom of providing hospitality and gifts to Healthcare Professionals this Christmas.
This is in line with the Medical Council guidelines on the relationships between doctors and industry and indeed the Framework for the Corporate and Financial Governance of the HSE: Codes of Standards and Behaviour.
We recommend that IMSTA member companies advise all their representatives of our position and, if necessary, issue their own letter to customers.
It may be appropriate in some instances for IMSTA members to consider making a charitable donation to an appropriate deserving cause, in lieu of the traditional Christmas gift, much the same as the Christmas Card initiative in the national newspapers.
IMSTA membership requires members to comply with the Code, which highlights the integrity of the Association and sets the standard of behaviour for the vast majority of medical supply and service companies operating in the market.