EFPIA Rule in 2020 – “Host Country Principle” for Meal Caps
In 2019, the European Federation of Pharmaceutical Industry and Associations (EFPIA) made changes to its reporting system. EFPIA consolidated its three codes: HCP (health care personnel), PO (patient organizations) and the Disclosure code (similar to open payments in the United States), into one simplified Code.
The objectives of this consolidation were to simplify concepts, remove repetitive provisions, and to clarify content as needed. EFPIA reported that the update to the Code provisions allows for a better concept alignment and helps to promote the common understanding of the Code by stakeholders and the general public. Basically, the goal was to improve adherence to the Code by being concise.
According to Article 10.05 of the EFPIA Code update published in 2019, Member Companies may not provide or offer any meal (food and beverages) to HCPs, HCOs’ members or POs’ Representatives, unless, in each case, the value of such meal does not exceed the monetary threshold set by the relevant Member Association in its National Code (following the “Host Country Principle”).
Here is the Scorecard defining the threshold on Meals and Drinks of the EFPIA Member Associations.
The “Host Country Principle” refers to the primacy of the monetary threshold for a meal (food and beverages) set by the relevant Member Association in its National Code. The monetary threshold set in the country where the Event takes place must prevail.
Also, according to the Code, in the event of a conflict between the provisions, the more restrictive of the conflicting provisions must apply, except for the application of Section 10.05, where the monetary threshold set in the country where the event takes place (i.e. the “host country”) must prevail.
This is a major step towards global standardization and positive news for pharma and medical meeting planners.
The EFPIA Code of Practice
The EFPIA Code constitutes the collection of ethical rules agreed by EFPIA members for the Promotion of Medicinal Products to HCPs and the interactions with HCPs, HCOs and POs, with the intent of guaranteeing that these activities are conducted while respecting the most stringent ethical principles of professionalism and responsibility.
Collaboration between pharmaceutical industry and healthcare professionals (HCPs) and healthcare organizations (HCOs) benefits patients. It is a relationship that has delivered numerous innovative medicines and changed the way many diseases impact on our lives. Furthermore, patient organizations (POs) play a critical role in Europe’s healthcare: from prevention and awareness, through research and development, regulatory and HTA decision making, to service design and outcomes measurement.
Bringing greater transparency to this already well-regulated and vital relationship, builds understanding of industry-POs and HCPs/HCOs collaboration and, in the context of increasing societal expectations on transparency, addresses directly public concerns about interactions between the medical community and the pharmaceutical industry.