KHN Morning Briefing

Summaries of health policy coverage from major news organizations

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Doctors Who Receive Payments From Industry Prescribe More Brand-Name Drugs, Analysis Finds

"This feeds into the ongoing conversation about the propriety of these sorts of relationships. Hopefully we're getting past the point where people will say, 'Oh, there's no evidence that these relationships change physicians' prescribing practices,'" says Dr. Aaron Kesselheim, an associate professor of medicine at Harvard Medical School who provided guidance on early versions of ProPublica's analysis.

NPR/ProPublica: Drug-Company Payments Mirror Doctors' Brand-Name Prescribing
Doctors have long disputed the accusation that the payments they receive from pharmaceutical companies have any relationship to how they prescribe drugs. There's been little evidence to settle the matter, until now. A new ProPublica analysis has found that doctors who receive payments from the medical industry do indeed prescribe drugs differently on average than their colleagues who don't. And the more money they receive, the more brand-name medications they tend to prescribe. (Ornstein, Jones and Tiga, 3/17)

In other news, the FDA says it's going to prioritize generic drug applications —

Marketplace: FDA Takes Step To Improve Generic Drug Competition
We’d all be paying a whole lot more if it wasn’t for generics, which amounts to as much as 85% of what we take. The Food and Drug Administration recently said it’s going to prioritize any generic drug application when there’s currently just one manufacturer. (Gorenstein, 3/15)

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