The Association of the British Pharmaceutical Industry (ABPI) has published the 2021 Code of Practice, which comes into force on July 1, 2021. These will help advise the pharmaceutical industry on how to operate to high ethical standards.
The ABPI Code of Practice is the industry’s commitment to operate in a professional, ethical and transparent manner, for the benefit of patients and the public.
It is independently administered by the Prescription Medicines Code of Practice Authority (PMCPA).
The 2021 Code has been updated to make it easier for companies to use in their day-to-day activities, to reflect changes in the environment companies operate in and to reflect updates to the European Code.
Some of the newer elements increase transparency and others will help companies work together with the NHS within an ethical framework to improve patient care.
All of these changes are intended to help the industry continue to uphold high standards, with the requirements in the existing Code already go above and beyond the law.
Increased emphasis is also being put on the ABPI Principles, which sit alongside the Code.
These are seen as key to how the industry operates and are essential in building trust. All companies are expected to embed them in their organisations, and the principles are:
- Benefitting patients
- Acting with integrity
- Promoting transparency
- Treating everyone with respect
Welcoming the new Code, ABPI Chief Executive Richard Torbett said: “We are proud of our Code which holds companies to standards which go above and beyond the law.
“The 2021 version of the Code has seen a substantial overhaul, and I’m confident that it will help companies keep to high standards and forge transparent and collaborative relationships for the benefit of patients."
ABPI President Ben Osborn added: “From this year we are putting new emphasis on the ABPI’s Principles.
“We want everyone in pharmaceutical companies to live and breathe these from leadership teams and commercial leads to admin assistants and research scientists.
“It’s all of our responsibility to put the Code and its Principles into action.”