Allegations that U.S. drugmaker Eli Lilly and Co spent more than $4.90 million to bribe doctors in China to prescribe the firm's medicines instead of rival products were recently published in a Chinese newspaper.
A former senior manager for Lilly told the 21st Century Business Herald that bribery and illegal payments at Eli Lilly's China operations were widespread. Fighting Novo Nordisk for a share of the fast-growing Chinese diabetes market, Lilly allegedly paid hospital doctors in Shanghai and Anhui for each new patient put on Lilly's diabetes drugs Humulin and Byetta. The company also paid doctors to give talks to other prescribers.
Eli Lilly is the third foreign drugmaker to face whistleblower accusations in the newspaper this month. The reports coincide with multiple Chinese investigations into the pharmaceutical sector, spanning alleged corruption to how drugs are priced.
Eli Lilly said in an emailed statement to Reuters that it was looking into the matter. Read more