The Code of Practice of the ABPI covers the promotion of medicines for prescribing to health professionals and other relevant decision makers including administrative staff as well as the provision of information to the public about prescription only medicines in the UK
The ABPI code of practice covers all aspects of drug promotion, including giveaway items, hospitality, sponsorship, and advertisements in journals and on the internet. It is administered by the Prescription Medicines Code of Practice Authority (PMCPA). All ABPI member companies are obliged to comply with both the spirit and letter of the Code.
“The aim of the Code is to ensure that the promotion of medicines to health professionals and other relevant decision makers is carried out within a robust framework to support high quality patient care. As well as covering promotional material, it controls samples, meetings, promotional aids, the provision of medical and educational goods and services, outcome or risk sharing agreements, patient access schemes, joint working between the pharmaceutical industry and the NHS, the conduct of non-interventional studies, the use of health professionals and other relevant decision makers as consultants and transfers of value to health professionals, other relevant decision makers and healthcare organisations.”
Link to the full ABPI code of practice Link Here
How does the code of practice affect BNMS delegates?
There are progressive limitations in the way that the pharmaceutical industry is allowed to promote its products. The exact rules on distribution of ‘freebies’ are complicated—reps can’t hand out items but can enclose them in packs given to delegates at conferences. These items may be branded with a company’s name but not with the names of their products.
The practice of giving prizes for competitions and quizzes is disallowed.
Hospitality supplied by drug companies can be provided only at educational or scientific meetings and in appropriate environments (not restaurants) and must cost the same as what recipients would normally pay. The hospitality can be provided to healthcare professionals only and not to friends, family, or administrative staff.
Drug companies can sponsor healthcare professionals to attend meetings by reimbursing food and travel expenses limited to economy class. Speakers and other contributors can also be reimbursed for their time.
Pharmaceutical companies can still provide support in the form of travel grants and help with educational courses.
Not all of our nuclear medicine industry supporters are accountable to the ABPI code of practice, it covers the promotion of medicine for prescribing to health professionals and other relevant decision makers including administrative staff.
The BNMS, on occasion, secures sponsorship from the pharmaceutical industry to support the financial costs for events that it organises. Industry partners providing this support are acknowledged on event flyers and programmes (correct at time of print). Symposium sponsorship goes towards supporting venue and audio visual costs, and various elements of delegate materials (badges, programmes, handouts, delegate lists, etc), BNMS administration and nominal speaker honorariums and travel expenses.
Link to code of practice clarifications - 'items at conferences and exhibition stands'
Sponsorship information can also be obtained by contacting Charlotte Weston, BNMS CEO, tel: 0738 529 7906 or email: firstname.lastname@example.org. The BNMS is committed to working with all its industry partners within the ABPI's Code of Practice.