Research in community hospitals is often funded and conducted in collaboration with industry, such as pharmaceutical and medical device companies, and with academic institutions supported by federal research funds. The ability to collaborate with other experts is an integral piece to conducting effective and progressive research. Sometimes, the expertise of community practice physicians is sought by industry in the development and testing of their products. These relationships typically include a financial payment or exchange of something of value to the physician. Similar to the research collaborations, this expertise is critical to successful and effective drug and device development. Therefore, in order to protect patients, participants in research and data integrity, Bon Secours requires its physicians to disclose these financial relationships in order to eliminate the possibility of bias or the appearance of bias in its research.
Under a new law committed to adding greater transparency in research, Open Payments, also known as the Physician Payments Sunshine Act (part of the Affordable Care Act), requires posting on a public website financial information about research payments from drug and device companies to hospitals and physician researchers. The background information above about Bon Secours’ research commitment may provide a useful context that helps to make the public posting of information more meaningful. Bon Secours takes its ethical and legal responsibilities in conducting research very seriously. Any questions regarding research activities may be directed to your Bon Secours health care provider or to Debbi Gilad, Director, BSHSI Office of Research at firstname.lastname@example.org or at (410) 442-3108.