ProPublica has been tracking drug company payments to doctors since 2010 through a project known as Dollars for Docs . Our first lookup tool included only seven companies, most of which were required to report their payments publicly as a condition of legal settlements. The tool now covers every drug and device company, thanks to the Physician Payment Sunshine Act , a part of the 2010 Affordable Care Act. The law required all drug and device companies to publicly report their payments. The first reports became public in 2014, covering the last five months of 2013; 2014 payments were released last year.
A study that was published in the Annals of Internal Medicine discovered that 38 percent of . adults were prescribed opioid painkillers in 2015 in a finding that even surprised the study’s authors, illustrating the extent of this problem. Five percent of American adults misuse opioids in some way, which equates to million people. These are frightening statistics and something needs to be done about the shameful behavior of Big Pharma and the doctors who are irresponsibly prescribing these drugs, creating addicts and destroying lives.
Central banks’ large-scale bond purchases vary in effectiveness, depending on what type of asset is purchased. Fed economist Robert Kurtzman and University of Southern California economist David Zeke argue that purchases on non-financial corporate bonds might create distortions in the cost of capital among companies, as those whose bonds are bought see lower financing costs. That could cause capital mis-allocation. With government bond purchases, on the other hand, cheaper capital costs are spread between both small and large firms more evenly.
The end result? A quantitative easing program that buys large-firm corporate debt can come with mis-allocation that’s large enough to make the government bond purchases a more effective tool for increasing output, at least when rates are higher than zero.
Misallocation Costs of Digging Deeper into the Central Bank Toolkit
Published August 2017
Available on the Federal Reserve website