GSK faces reputation challenge in Poland bribery claims

GlaxoSmithKline is facing a criminal investigation in Poland over allegations it bribed doctors to promote its asthma drug Seretide, a BBC Panorama investigation has revealed.

GlaxoSmithKline is facing a criminal investigation in Poland over allegations it bribed doctors to promote its asthma drug Seretide, a BBC Panorama investigation has revealed.

The BBC investigation, which will be broadcast on Monday night, claims the company may have violated the UK Bribery Act and the US Foreign Corrupt Practices Act, which make it illegal for companies to bribe government employees abroad.

GSK issued a response on Monday morning saying it had taken disciplinary action and was cooperating with Polish authorities.

"Following receipt of allegations regarding the conduct of the program in the Lodz region, GSK has investigated the matter using resources from both inside and outside the company," GSK said. "The investigation found evidence of inappropriate communication in contravention of GSK policy by a single employee. The employee concerned was reprimanded and disciplined as a result."

The pharma giant added that "we agree there is a need to modernize interactions between the pharmaceutical industry and healthcare professionals to ensure patients’ interests are always put first and to eliminate even a perception of a conflict of interest."

It also noted that it has "made, and will continue to make, fundamental changes to our business."
Following a corruption scandal in China last December, GSK announced changes to its incentive plans including an end to direct payments to doctors for promotional talks and no longer setting individual targets for its sales representatives.

This story originally appeared on the website of PRWeek UK.

Would you like to post a comment?

Please Sign in or register.

News by email...