FDA Encourages Doctors to Report Off-Label Marketing

The FDA recently touted figures from its Bad Ad Campaign, a campaign designed to encourage doctors, patients and sales professionals to report misleading advertising and promotions in the healthcare industry. The 328 reports submitted over the last year are three times as many as the average of 104 reports submitted in previous years.

The FDA has pledged ongoing support for the program that will take aim at young professionals entering the healthcare industry and continuing to educate groups at hospitals and trade shows.

Of the reports submitted most were turned in by doctors, sending a message to the pharma sales force, “Docs are now the eyes and ears of the FDA.”

Unfortunately, in the past, the FDA has been very slow to take action on reports of wayward marketing promotions. Indeed, all too often, providers’ concerns have been simply lost in the morass of government bureaucracy.

The good news is that the False Claims Act provides a viable alternative. This fraud-fighting law not only provides substantial rewards for whistleblowers, but it includes an action-enforcing mechanism that statutorily requires the government to investigate allegations of fraud. In other words, if providers want to ensure that the government will at least consider their concerns, they should file a False Claims Act qui tam action.

If a provider is aware of egregious off-label promotions, they are strongly encouraged to seek out an experienced law firm that focuses its practice on health care False Claims Act actions.

For more information about qui tam law and healthcare fraud, contact Nolan & Auerbach, P.A.

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