Transparency around financial relationships between the pharma industry and the mental health sector is crucial to ensure the independence of health professionals and to shaping mental health systems that provide a range of appropriate support to people living with mental ill health.
MHE is concerned that lack of transparency has led to the over-medicalisation of mental health and a worrying reliance on drugs as the only form of treatment for mental ill health. This is why we are launching our Mapping of Sunshine and Transparency Laws across Europe.
Sunshine and transparency laws and regulations allow the public greater knowledge of the financial interactions and affiliations between pharmaceutical companies and the healthcare sector (health and mental health care professionals and organisations). Theses rules and regulations ensure that payments or ‘benefits’ in kind or in cash provided by pharmaceutical companies to healthcare professionals and organisations are disclosed to the public.
Our Mapping of Sunshine and Transparency Laws and rules sheds a light on the current situation in Europe and the need for greater transparency around the financial relationships between big Pharma and healthcare professionals. As this mapping shows, the legal approaches to transparency vary throughout Europe. They may take the form of anti-corruption and transparency legislation. The Pharma industry has also adopted welcomed self-regulatory and non-binding disclosure codes.
Further to this mapping exercise, MHE strongly recommends that European States adopt clear and robust Sunshine and transparency Laws, which are legally binding, to ensure that there is full transparency around the financial relationships between these two important health actors who are at the heart of our mental health policy and systems.