Psychiatrists getting largest pharma gifts

It looks like psychiatrists are getting the most love from pharmaceutical companies, a relationship which critics say could be behind the increasing use of costly atypical antipsychotic drugs for children.

As states begin to track pharma gifts to doctors, psychiatrists are increasingly coming up as top beneficiaries for pharma payments. In Vermont, for example, pharma payments to psychiatrists more than doubled last year, hitting $45,692 per individual, up from $20,835 in 2005. Data from Minnesota, too, suggests that psychiatrists get the highest compensation from pharmas.

Faced with such numbers, which some say are fueling the staggering rise in antipsychotic drug expenses for Medicaid programs, more states are considering drug maker gift reporting requirements or limits.

To learn more about this trend:
- read this piece in The New York Times (reg. req.)

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