In the latest attempt to examine financial ties between physicians and the pharmaceutical industry, a new study finds that payments to rheumatologists by drug makers are associated with an increased likelihood of prescribing and Medicare spending.
Between 2013 and 2015, more than 3,700 – or two-thirds – of all rheumatologists in the U.S. received some type of payment from a pharmaceutical company. Depending upon the drug, payments for food and beverages likely increased prescribing anywhere from 1.5% to 4.5%, while such payments boosted annual Medicare spending from 3% to 23%.
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