In a notable move, a U.K. trade group has rebuked Leo Pharma for a “serious and extremely concerning” violation of voluntary codes after learning a company manager coerced staff into gaining competitive information. And by doing so, the drugmaker discredited and lowered confidence in the pharmaceutical industry.
The incident involved an attempt by a Leo manager to gain pricing information about a rival medicine from an unnamed individual who, at the time, worked for the U.K.’s National Health Service, according to the Prescription Medicines Code of Practice Authority. This is a self-regulatory body overseen by the Association of the British Pharmaceutical Industry, the trade group.
The Leo manager wanted the pricing information in order to bolster its submission to the U.K.’s National Institute for Health and Care Excellence, a government agency that assess the cost effectiveness of medicines. These evaluations are then used by the NHS to determine coverage, which explains why the Leo manager sought information about any discounts offered by a competitor.