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Good Pharma Scorecard: See What the Top 5 Sponsors Have in Common


November 4, 2019

The Good Pharma Scorecard, as its acronym suggests, is the industry GPS for clinical trial transparency. Bioethics International, founded in 2005 by Jennifer Miller, Ph.D., is the organization behind the Good Pharma Scorecard. The ranking rates biopharmaceutical companies and new drugs on their clinical trial transparency and data-sharing performance, taking into account ethics and legal standards.

According to the Good Pharma Scorecard website, clinical trial transparency and data sharing are important for several reasons, including:

  • Transparency is key to protecting and respecting research participants and  users of medicines and vaccines
  • Transparency is key to maximizing the value of generated trial data and people’s participation in trials
  • Opacity can drive up costs of research and care

Here are the Top 5 sponsors on the most recent Good Pharma Scorecard ranking for transparency:

#1          Novo Nordisk                   (100%)

#1          Roche/Genentech           (100%) – up from last year

#3          Novartis                            (99%) – up from last year

#4          Merck                                (93%) – up from last year

#5          Bristol-Myers Squibb      (92%)

And our Top 5 sponsors on the most recent Good Pharma Scorecard ranking for data sharing:

#1          Novartis                            (100%)

#1          Novo Nordisk                   (100%)

#1          Roche                                (100%)

#5          Bristol-Myers Squibb      (80%)

What do these Top 5 sponsors all have in common? They rely on TrialScope Disclose to manage clinical trial disclosure.

In addition to benefiting patients, the Good Pharma Scorecard also is a positive for sponsors. We spoke with disclosure experts at two of the Top 5 sponsors on the list, who explain why the ranking is so important to their organizations and to the industry as a whole:

Julia Galperin, Global Head of Regulatory Disclosures and Data Sharing Officer, Genentech:

What is Genentech’s corporate policy/commitment to clinical trial transparency and data sharing?

Genentech/Roche has both a formal policy and a corporate commitment to transparency and data sharing. They provides patients, who are the center of our priority, visibility into the data that we have. And they provide the scientific community the ability to use that data to drive science forward.

What is the significance of the Good Pharma Scorecard to Genentech?

We’re not doing what we do because of the Good Pharma Scorecard; we’re doing what we do because it’s the right thing to do. The Good Pharma Scorecard is a byproduct of that. It’s nothing that drives our own conduct; it doesn’t change our behavior. It exemplifies the output of our behavior; we are a company with very high standards for ourselves. At the very center, we want to drive science forward. We take transparency very seriously. While we are compliant on the disclosures we have to make from a regulatory standpoint, our goal is to meet the unmet medical needs of patients. We’re in the business of helping patients or potential patients and helping drive medical discovery in the world. It’s all around helping patients live longer, live better, and furthering medical disc in every way we can.

What value do you see the GPS having for the industry as a whole?

The scorecard focuses on specific drugs approved by the FDA in a single calendar year. As far as the significance of the scorecard, it evaluates how companies are doing in that space in disclosure and transparency – I think it plays a role similar to that of a report card when you’re in school, “grading” companies on their performance. What the scorecard does is provide visibility and transparency to the whole world as to how companies are doing.

What do you think the future holds for clinical trial transparency and data sharing?

I think that this is a continued journey, and our focus on patients and transparency continues to drive our actions. This isn’t a one-and-done effort. We don’t take this responsibility lightly.

I think that we’re headed towards even more aggressive transparency and evaluating what additional knowledge and insight we can get from that. This will help patients and impact trial design/protocols as we continue on that path. The patient voice has incredible value for trial design as well as trial execution; that’s something I think we’re going to be seeing more of in future waves of trial transparency and data sharing.

Simone Kraemer, Lead, Clinical Trial Transparency and Disclosure, Bristol-Myers Squibb:

What is Bristol-Myers Squibb’s corporate policy/commitment to clinical trial transparency and data sharing?

We do have an official policy statement. We are committed to adhering to both industry standards and regulations with regard to data sharing. Our approach is to share data for any trials completed after 2008 and have been completed for at least two years. Based on external research requests we receive,  those go through an internal review and approval process. Internally, we we determine whether data sets are available, what is the informed consent status, and whether we can we share the data. The requests also go through an external review process with the Duke Clinical Research Institute. This is an independent review committee that provides unbiased assessment.

What is the significance of the Good Pharma Scorecard to Bristol-Myers Squibb?

It is, of course, important. We do always strive and aim to be compliant, but it takes a lot of effort and resources. This acknowledges that. As a company, we can take pride that we are doing well in terms of disclosure and transparency. Internally, it’s important for our leaders – it is a positive reflection on the work that our transparency team is doing.

What value do you see the GPS having for the industry as a whole?

I do think that if we have a scorecard that reflects in an objective manner how we are doing on data sharing and transparency, it gives us an incentive to do well. People often call out bad pharma, so this provides a balance that also shows the good. It definitely holds sponsors accountable. Everything in disclosure and transparency goes back to the public to inform them what is happening. I like to think that the Good Pharma Scorecard has a positive impact on the reputation of the pharmaceutical industry. It shows that we are not just committed to the data but how we are doing against the goals we have set for ourselves. In the industry, we do see a number of players that are doing really well.  Personnel/resources.

What do you think the future holds for clinical trial transparency and data sharing?

In terms of transparency, in the interest  of making sure we inform the public, we will see that increase further. From my own perspective, I’m a scientist so I appreciate the validity of making information to the public, not just journal articles one by one. I see a great opportunity for enhanced transparency, not just the public but the scientific community as well. In terms of data sharing, I see exponential opportunity to gain more insights from data that has already been collected. On the one hand, we maintain patient privacy, but then share data in the right way with other researchers, so there could be an explosion of knowledge leveraging the data that already exists. I like to think that in five to 10 years from now it will be a whole different world. It’s very encouraging. In the future, we will be able to contribute more to the public good.