What Is the Sunshine Act?


Quick Answer

The Sunshine Act is a requirement set by the Federal Government in 2013 that mandates all gifts and payments made to doctors and physicians by drug and medical device manufacturers must be reported. This act is also known as the Physician Financial Transparency Reports, states the American Medical Association.

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Full Answer

Implemented by the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services, the Sunshine Act is referred to as the Open Payments Program. Medical manufacturers are additionally required to submit transfer of ownership information as well as payment reports. These reports are released yearly to the public and are available on the CMS website. Once these reports are disclosed, manufacturers can expect to be contacted by patients and the media for questions or information on all payment reports, explains the American Medical Association.

The CMS deputy director as of 2015, Anita Griner, claims that the goal of the program is to provide data accuracy. Grainer adds that in order to avoid false reports, manufacturers and physicians should check with the CMS website in order to assure all the information on the reports is correct. There is a 45-day period in which incorrect data can be challenged before it is made available to the public. The Sunshine Act's intention is to avoid potential conflicts that can influence important research or education and interfere in clinical decisions, the Orange County Medical Association claims.

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