Sunshine Act will have repercussions for medical device manufacturers

Sunshine Act will have repercussions for medical device manufacturers

With the passage of the Sunshine Act, everyone in the healthcare sector now faces tougher rules regarding what financial details they report to the federal government. Everyone, from the corporations selling prescription drugs to the scientists in research labs, is affected. But one group in particular will really have to change its ways: medical device manufacturers.

The Sunshine Act includes significant obligations for device makers and their affiliates, according to Smith, Gambrell and Russell. All companies providing products to federal health programs, including Medicare and Medicaid, must report payments made to physicians and teaching hospitals. These companies must begin collecting relevant data on August 1 and reporting it no later than March 31, 2014. There are exceptions, but not many - most notably, manufacturers who made less than 10 percent of total gross revenue from covered products only need to report revenues from those products, not all of their overall expense reports.

The release of the Sunshine Act's final regulations comes after a 13-month delay, according to Forbes - the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services initially announced their proposal in December 2011, but hundreds of comments from interested parties flooded in during early 2012, making for a long "comment period" to sort out everyone's concerns.

Now that the act is finally a reality, device manufacturers across America will need to adjust. There will be more transparency now than ever.