Last week the Council for Evidenced-Based Psychiatry (CEP) called for “the implementation of a UK Sunshine Act to make transparent the financial relationships between doctors and pharmaceutical companies & the makers of medical devices”.
This call has my full support.
I have campaigned for Sunshine legislation for over a decade now and in September 2013 raised a petition with the Scottish Parliament to “urge the Scottish Government to introduce a Sunshine Act for Scotland, creating a searchable record of all payments (including payments in kind) to NHS Scotland healthcare workers from Industry and Commerce.”
After the consideration of much evidence the petition was closed by the Scottish Parliament in March 2016. This followed a gathering of public views on Sunshine legislation by the Scottish Health Council. The full report can be read here and it confirms that the majority of those consulted were of the view that Sunshine legislation was necessary.
However, as reported in the BMJ, the Scottish Government quietly rejected Sunshine legislation:
The above report was followed by this Editorial:
It has been suggested that for Sunshine legislation to be implemented in the UK that it needs “support from the top”. So I wrote to all the Royal Colleges and to organisations involved in Continuing Medical Education in the UK and received the following responses (as at the end of 2018).
I hope that the Council for Evidenced-Based Psychiatry (CEP) will make more progress than I did in calling for Sunshine legislation.
I am writing this post as a reminder that the Scottish public are supportive!