Greece is the next European country to fall into line with transparency measures at the European level. The Greek pharmaceutical industry organisation, the Hellenic Association of Pharmaceutical Companies (SFEE), has recently announced unanimous approval of a new Disclosure Code by its General Assembly.
SFEE comprises 60 Pharmaceutical enterprises operating in Greece, which cover all innovative medicinal products, as well as 90% of the pharmaceutical market. Applicable to pharmaceutical companies, based in Greece or abroad, the Code will commit the companies to disclose all the details of their interactions with Healthcare Professionals (HCPs) and Healthcare Organisations (HCOs).
During a Press Conference held on October 9th, the Greek Minister of Health informed the mass media and the public about the new transparency measures and has expressed his intention to legislate them. After a number of initiatives at the European level, including the recent EFPIA Disclosure Code, Greece has committed itself to maximising transparency, self-regulation and integrity when it comes to the relationship between its healthcare providers and pharmaceutical companies.
Natalia Toubanaki, Communication Director at SFEE, told BMI SYSTEM that the initiative “aims to contribute to the credibility and transparency that Greece badly needs, and to bring to the surface the healthy relationships between pharmaceutical companies and healthcare professionals, making them more transparent and therefore more easily understood by patients, healthcare stakeholders and of course the public. With this new Code, SFEE will make a positive contribution to the overall effort that our country is making to get back on a path of growth. And it’s our duty to maximize this effort and ensure its success.”
On the agenda are now a series of activities to raise awareness of the Code among stakeholders: a Code Awareness campaign is running until the 15th of November for healthcare professionals around Greece that is led by scientific experts from SFEE member companies that will visit doctors to communicate the principles of the Disclosure Code. There will also be an information section on the SFEE website that will give details of the Code and, by 2016, there will be a dedicated platform that will hold all of the information on payment data.
Ruth Knowles is a freelance science writer who has written articles and press releases on a range of life science and health topics. She received her MSc in Science Communication from the University of the West of England, Bristol.