25 July 2013
Dear Mr Gordon
Request for Review of Decision under the Freedom of information (Scotland) Act 2002
- I refer to your email dated 17 June 2013 addressed to FOI NHSG, advising that a response to your earlier modified request dated 8 May 2013 was still awaited.
- By email dated 17 June 2013, Mr Chris Monica, information Governance Manager, responded to you advising that the email of 17 June 2013 had been taken as a request for a review ofthe non-response to your original request.
- Your original email request dated 8 May 2013 contained a modified letter requesting a copy of a register of payments from pharmaceutical companies (and other reIevant companies) to staff, in case of conflict of interest. I apologise for the time taken to respond to you both in regard to your initial query and to your request for a review. This has been partly due to the absence of Key staff on annual leave.
- I have checked with a number of senior clinical and other staff as to whether such a register of payments from pharmaceutical companies is maintained by NHS Grampian. The response I have received is that no such register is maintained and therefore a copy is unable to be provided to you.
- I have looked at any alternatives to such a Register that might be relevant to your query. There is a corporate hospitality register which is completed by senior staff but this generally relates to invitations to seminars, dinners, other events by private companies etc. I have reviewed that register and can find no entries relating to payments made by pharmaceutical companies to staff. There is also a Register of Board Members’ Interests but again that would not appear to fall within the area of your request.
- I have also checked out with relevant officers the position regarding clinical trials with pharmaceutical companies. These entailed various pharmaceutical sponsors providing grants for studies to be carried out. In these “Iive” studies there are frequently confidentiality agreements between the companies involved and the Health Board. I have also been advised that any funding provided by the pharmaceutical companies does not go directly to clinicians involved but to relevant departments, endowments, or NHS Grampian generally. Again, these would therefore not appear to be what you were enquiring about.
- In all of the circumstances therefore, NHS Grampian is unable to provide a register to meet your requirements. lf you feel however, that your enquiry relates to any of the points above, please let me know and these will be pursued further for you.
- I would advise that I have copied this reply to Mr Morrice for his information.
- Please accept my apologies once again for the severe delays your have encountered. Ways of reducing these delays are being introduced.
- Should you remain dissatisfied with this notice provided under Section 21 (5) of the Freedom of information (Scotland) Act 2002, please note that you may apply to the Scottish information Commissioner within six months of receiving this letter for a decision as to whether your request for information has been dealt with in accordance with the provisions of Part 1 of the Act.
2 Eday Road
For the full communication with NHS Grampian: https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/register_of_payments_from_pharma_156#outgoing-289103
Our Cabinet Secretary for Health and Wellbeing on this matter: