UW News

April 20, 2006

UW project gets $400,000 in settlement funds

The UW will receive nearly $400,000 to educate health-care providers about the pharmaceutical industry’s marketing influence on how drugs are prescribed.

The UW is one of 22 grantees nationwide to receive such a grant, funded by an $8 million settlement between attorneys general and the makers of an epilepsy drug.

The grant will also fund projects that provide strategies for accessing unbiased sources of information about drugs.

In his announcement, Washington Attorney General Rob McKenna congratulated Dr. Linda Pinsky, UW associate professor of medicine in the Division of General Internal Medicine and director of residency ambulatory education, for submitting the project “Drug Reps in the Attic,” for a grant.

McKenna said the project would result in better and more cost-effective health care in Washington state and nationwide by achieving a balance between promotional messages and consumer education.

The Washington State Attorney General’s Office led part of a multi-state investigation concerning illegal drug marketing that resulted in a $430 million multi-state settlement with Warner-Lambert, now a division of Pfizer.

A portion of the 2004 settlement was earmarked for campaigns to help physicians, pharmacists and consumers access fair and balanced information about prescription drugs.