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In an anticlimactic finish to an embarrassing scandal, the Japanese government has scolded Bayer (BAYRY) for improper promotional activities and, at the same time, ordered the company to bolster its procedures for reporting side effects.

The health ministry issued a verbal guidance after finding Bayer employees “inappropriately” accessed patient data as part of a plan to promote the Xarelto blood thinner. The data was taken from surveys in medical journal papers when Xarelto was launched in 2012 and a former Bayer sales rep claimed he was instructed to gather the data from dozens of patients about dosing and related health matters.

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