Eli Lilly to disclose payments to physicians

In a historic move, but one that is likely to become more common as drugmakers work to hold off threatening legislation, pharmaceutical firm Eli Lilly and Co. has said that next year it will begin disclosing how much it paid to individual doctors for consulting, speeches and other services. Starting in the second half of 2009 Eli Lilly will disclose payments of more than $500 to doctors for consulting gigs and speaking at educational seminars. Eventually, it also plans to expand the list to travel, entertainment and gifts.

Eli Lilly's $500 disclosure level is no coincidence. Lawmakers from both houses of Congress had previously introduced bills requiring pharmas and medical devicemakers to disclose payments to doctors over $25, and pharmas balked. But when some Senators agreed to a $500 cutoff, they won the support of not only Eli Lilly but also the American Medical Association.

To get more background on Eli Lilly's decision:
- read this piece from the Associated Press

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