The MassDevice Guide to Gift Bans

June 12, 2009 by MassDevice's Guide to Gift Bans

The Massachusetts gifts ban goes into effect July 1. That means life science companies doing business in the Commonwealth, including medical device makers, must comply with its stringent regulations governing any gifts or payments to physicians of more than $50.

Massachusetts isn't alone in its effort to regulate the life science industry. Vermont surpassed the Bay State's famously strict rules with a gift ban of its own, requiring disclosure of all industry payments to doctors, and other states are considering similar rules.

Then there's the Physician's Sunshine Act of 2009, proposed federal legislation worming its way through Washington that could wind up containing gift ban provisions.

With all that in mind, MassDevice presents this handy guide to gift bans. We've assembled coverage of the issue from our newswire, feature articles and blogs and gathered relevant documents in PDF format for free download. We hope it serves as a valuable resource for everyone connected with the medical device and life science industry — from patients and doctors to executives in the C-level suites.

As the issue evolves, we'll update this page with the latest news and information.

The Massachusetts gift ban

Below you'll find PDFs explaining the details of the Massachusetts gift ban, including the statute itself, answers to frequently asked questions and the compliance form companies must file with the state.

In a nutshell, compliance requires companies to:

  1. Institute a marketing code of conduct
  2. Create programs to "routinely train appropriate employees, including, without limitation, all sales and marketing staff"
  3. Implement procedures to investigate and report to the state any violations of the code
  4. File annual disclosure reports with the Mass. Dept. of Public Health detailing all payments to healthcare providers (the first report is due July 1, 2010)
  5. Pay an annual fee of $2,000 ("Please make checks payable to the Commonwealth of Massachusetts")
Chapter111NStatute.pdf20.13 KB
ComplianceFilingForm.pdf17.08 KB
ConductCode.pdf63.44 KB
ConductCodeFAQ.pdf56.76 KB
ConductCodeFinalPromulgation.pdf59.17 KB
ConductCodeGuide.pdf33.36 KB