Impact of the Physician Payment Sunshine Act on State Regulations: Gift Ban Laws

In the first part of our Physician Payment Sunshine Act blog series, the experienced pharmaceutical litigation lawyers at Robinson Calcagnie Robinson Shapiro Davis, Inc. discussed existing disclosure laws of several jurisdictions. The disclosure of high-cost gifts was one of the stipulations of these laws, but there are also states which have established laws banning certain gifts from medical device and pharmaceutical manufacturers.

Vermont, Minnesota and Massachusetts outlawed certain gifts outright while other states, such as Nevada, Connecticut and California, and the District of Columbia, require device and drug companies to comply with the “Code on Interactions with Health Care Professionals,” written in by the Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers of America (PhRMA). In Colorado, certain gifts were banned for physicians affiliated with state university hospitals.

Both PhRMA’s Code and state laws both prohibit reimbursement of entertainment and travel, out-of-office meals, direct payments except for services, non-faculty honoraria and items not intended for patient care. The Code and statutory gift ban laws also include some of the same exemptions, including:

  • Speaker and consulting fees;
  • Educational materials;
  • Contributions to CME event sponsors; and
  • Drug samples for patients.

While the PPSA carries a preemption clause that may impact state disclosure laws, other state regulations, such as gift ban laws, remain intact.

Visit our blog again for the continuation of our PPSA Blog Series.

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