Medtronic plans disclosure of doctors getting $5K-plus annually

Medical devicemaker Medtronic has become the latest of a string of companies agreeing to voluntarily disclose their payments to physicians. 

Starting in March 2011, the company plans to begin reporting all payments over $5,000 that it makes to doctors, with the first report covering 2010, to include consulting fees, royalties and honoraria.

This plan is far more conservative than the $100 threshold proposed by the Physician Payment Sunshine Act, a pending federal bill that would call for disclosure of financial relationships between the biomedical industry and physicians. It's also more conservative than disclosure initiatives announced by pharmas like Pfizer and Lilly, which have agreed to report payments of $500 a year or more.

However, it does represent a significant step for Medtronic, which is one of the first medical devicemakers to take such a step, according to a company spokesperson.

To get more information on Medtronic's plans:
- read this Wall Street Journal Health Blog piece

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