Pharma ethics bill founders in Colorado

New pharma ethics legislation got cut off at the pass in Colorado yesterday. State senators voted down a comprehensive reform bill that would have banned pharma gifts to docs and required companies to disclose their advertising and marketing budgets, among other things. The proposed rules would have been the toughest in the country, the Rocky Mountain News reports.

No surprise, then, to learn that drugmakers were opposed. Pharma and bioscience companies spooked legislators, saying that the restrictions would have diverted business from the state. Conventions would go elsewhere, because companies wouldn't be able to hand out freebies at their booths. And clinical trials would elect to go elsewhere if they were required to disclose proprietary info like budgets.

Besides, drugmakers said that the "olden days" of wining and dining doctors and their spouses with expensive meals and junkets and sports tickets are already over, the Denver Post writes.

As you know, Massachusetts recently launched restrictions on pharma gifts, and consumer advocates in New York are lobbying the legislature to bar gifts of more than $50. Meanwhile, in Minnesota, state senators are debating a doc-gift ban on not only drugmakers, but distributors, medical supply companies, and device makers.

- see the piece in the News
- check out the Post story