Necessity Still Breeds Ingenuity - Archive of SQUALL MAGAZINE 1992-2006

News and Other Busyness

Drugs Companies To Sponsor Nurses

Squall 13, Summer 1996, pg. 12.

NURSES COULD BE SPONSORED by pharmaceutical companies in future if a discussion paper circulated by Secretary of State for Health, Stephen Dorrell, is enacted.

In the paper Dorrell suggests drug-company sponsorship of nurses could be part of “disease management packages” which will increase private sector involvement in the NHS.

Such pharmaceutical company sponsorship was firmly rejected in a guidance note issued by the NHS executive in December 1994.

The guidance note expressed concerns that such vested-interest market involvement would further threaten a doctor’s selection of the appropriate drug rather than one belonging to the sponsoring pharmaceutical company.

However, this guidance lapsed this June and Dorrell is now keen to provide opportunities for pharmaceutical companies to exert even more market influence on frontline medical services.

A spokesperson for the world’s largest drugs company, Glaxo Wellcome, praised Dorrell’s idea, describing it as “the beginning of a dialogue between people talking the same language”.