Drug and device firms paid 65B to care providers

first_imgWASHINGTON (AP) — From research dollars to free lunches and junkets, drug and medical device companies paid doctors and leading hospitals nearly $6.5 billion last year, according to government data posted Tuesday.The latest update to the Open Payments database is part of an ongoing effort to highlight potential conflicts of interest in medicine. Unlike last year’s initial version of the database, this one is much easier to use for consumers interested in looking up their own doctors. Mesa family survives lightning strike to home Here’s how to repair and patch damaged drywall Top Stories Of the total payments, $3.2 billion represented research funding, about $2.6 billion was for miscellaneous items and about $700 million represented investments and ownership stakes. Drug companies often recruit doctors to help with clinical trials and other research on particular medications.About 80 percent of the total dollars went to doctors, whose prescribing decisions affect the fortunes of pharmaceutical and medical device manufacturers. Nearly 610,000 doctors received payments, as well as some 1,100 teaching hospitals.Consumer groups say it’s a step toward transparency. Doctors, hospitals and industry worry that context will be lost. The Open Payments program was created under President Barack Obama’s health care law.___Online:Open Payments database: https://openpaymentsdata.cms.gov/Copyright © The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed. Ex-FBI agent details raid on Phoenix body donation facility Comments   Share   center_img New Valley school lets students pick career-path academies Arizona families, Arizona farms: working to produce high-quality milk Sponsored Stories 4 must play golf courses in Arizona Early signs of cataracts in your parents and how to helplast_img