Orthopedic-device maker Zimmer Holdings, Warsaw, Ind., expects to spend $50 million to $60 million during its current fiscal year to implement an enhanced global compliance program, according to its 2008 second-quarter report.
The program would govern relationships between Zimmers marketing and product-development teams and medical providers. The worldwide compliance effort would establish guidelines for the devicemakers product development, marketing, surgeon-training, educational and charitable-funding activities.
The standards, according to the quarterly report, are expected to exceed those established by deferred-prosecution and corporate-integrity agreements that Zimmer entered into last September with U.S. prosecutors to settle charges that the devicemaker set up phony physician-consulting deals in order to increase sales of its implant products. Four other devicemakers entered into similar agreements.
Implementation of the enhanced global compliance program has delayed some of Zimmers efforts to launch new products. As a result, we have experienced slower than anticipated adoption of certain new products, wrote company officials in the current quarterly report. While we believe these disruptions are temporary, this issue is expected to adversely impact the adoption of new products across all our product categories during 2008. -- by Shawn Rhea
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