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New Pharma Code to Help Improve Marketing Practices

Tuesday, 20 September 2011, 05:16 Hrs
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Bangalore: The implementation of the uniform code of pharmaceutical marketing practices (UCPMP) is expected to encourage good marketing practices by pharmaceutical companies.

Pharma companies in India should focus on building a robust internal controls system for ensuring compliance with the code formulated by Department of Pharmaceuticals (DoP) to regulate marketing practices, a E&Y survey said.

The Ernst & Young study titled 'Pharmaceutical marketing: ethical and responsible conduct' is based on a survey conducted among a mix of healthcare professionals (HCPs) and pharma marketing professionals to understand the effectiveness of the newly introduced regulatory guidelines around pharmaceutical marketing.

The survey provides an insight on how current regulations are affecting the HCPs and the pharmaceutical industry. The Department of Pharmaceuticals (DoP), recently formed by the Government, has introduced a voluntary draft of uniform code of pharmaceutical marketing practices (UCPMP) to check any irregularities in the industry.

Speaking on the survey, Arpinder Singh, Partner and National Leader, Fraud Investigation and Dispute Services (FIDS), Ernst & Young India said, "Along with the MCI guidelines and code of marketing, India has adopted a two-tier approach that covers HCPs (doctors) and pharmaceutical companies operating in the country, to create a transparent and ethical environment that will benefit consumers. However, our survey indicated that effectiveness of the code will be
low in the absence of legislative support to the UCPMP committee."

Around two-third of the respondents of the survey felt that the implementation of the UCPMP would change the manner in which the pharma products are currently marketed in India and more than 50% of the respondents are of the
opinion that UCPMP's guidelines may lead to manipulation in recording of actual sampling activity.

"In order to ensure ethical and transparent relationship between the medical practitioners and pharmaceutical companies, the Government will continue to introduce new regulations. It is the responsibility of pharma companies to
demonstrate their compliance with these regulations. One of the best ways to achieve this can be by putting in place an effective internal compliance review program (CRP)," Singh said.
Source: PTI
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