Sanofi (SNY) agreed to pay more than $25 million to resolve charges brought by the Securities and Exchange Commission that its subsidiaries in the Middle East and Kazakhstan bribed officials and doctors to boost purchases of its medicines. In doing so, Sanofi becomes only the latest in a growing number of drug makers to violate the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act.
To increase sales, the company devised various schemes in nearly a dozen countries that involved the use of fake expenses for purportedly legitimate travel and entertainment expense, clinical trial and consulting fees, product samples, roundtable meeting expenses, distributor discounts, and credit notes to distributors, which were improperly recorded in accounting records.
It seems to me that bribery is an acceptable ‘cost of doing business’ in countries where the cultural norm is to expect firms to ‘sweeten the pot’ in order to make headway.
We should not hold our companies to the same high ethical principles of our home country in other countries where they would like to do business, and where these values are not the norm and are therefore meaningless.
It might seem out of character for Trump to do this, but since he has done nothing to effectively deal with either health insurance costs or opioid suicides and ODs, (like even bothering to using addiction experts to staff ONDCP) this is a cynical way to appear serious about both at no cost to the tax payer.
Call me … puzzled. If the good Dr in Jordan was given 24 vials ‘as samples’ and the hospital only ordered another 96, what must the markup be to give that much away ….. along with assorted bribes (ok, fees for special services etc.) and still make a profit?
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