Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland
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Payments reported by the pharmaceutical industry in Ireland from 2015 to 2019: An observational study.

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Version 1 2021-08-31, 16:44
journal contribution
posted on 2021-08-31, 16:44 authored by Frank MoriartyFrank Moriarty, James LarkinJames Larkin, Tom FaheyTom Fahey
Background: The pharmaceutical industry makes large numbers of payments to healthcare organisations (HCOs) and healthcare professionals (HCPs). Ireland has a large pharmaceutical industry presence and national debate on legislating for greater industry payment transparency. This study characterises payments in Ireland to HCPs and HCOs during 2015-2019, and the content, consistency and methodology of the data source.
Methods: An observational study of, the disclosure website for the Irish Pharmaceutical Health Association pharmaceutical companies. We conducted a quantitative analysis, summarising payments to HCOs, HCPs and for research and development (R&D). We quantified disclosure rates of names for HCP and HCO payment recipients. We also conducted a content analysis of the methodology notes and website content.
Results: Payments totalling €163 million were reported by 47 companies during 2015-2019, €84.6 million for R&D, with non-R&D payments of €45.1 million to HCOs and €33.6 million to HCPs. HCOs were named for 91.2% of payments, and HCPs for 55.1-62.8% across study years. For 2019, ten companies disclosed >€1 million in payments, and three disclosed >€1 million in HCO and HCP payments. Content analysis of 132 data reports and 46 methodology notes indicated substantial variation in methodologies for reporting between companies.
Conclusions: There are substantial payments in Ireland, often the recipient is undisclosed, and companies differ in their reporting. A mandatory disclosure system could enhance transparency.


HRB Centre for Primary Care Research (HRC/2014/1)



The original article is available at

Published Citation

Moriarty F, Larkin J, Fahey T. Payments reported by the pharmaceutical industry in Ireland from 2015 to 2019: An observational study. Health Policy. 2021:S0168-8510(21)00201-3.

Publication Date

3 August 2021

PubMed ID



  • School of Pharmacy and Biomolecular Sciences
  • General Practice

Research Area

  • Population Health and Health Services


Elsevier BV


  • Accepted Version (Postprint)