Physicians and teaching hospitals received $9.35 billion in payments from manufacturers and group purchasing organizations in 2018, up $380 million, or 4%, from the year before, according to Open Payments Program data the CMS published Friday.
The payments consisted of $3 billion in general, non-research remuneration, $4.9 billion in research payments, and $1.4 billion in ownership or investment interests held by physicians or their immediate family members.
The reported payments went to 627,392 physicians and 1,180 teaching hospitals.
The Open Payments Program was created by the Physician Payments Sunshine Act, part of the Affordable Care Act. The goal was to increase transparency to help identify potential conflicts of interest in prescribing and other clinical behavior. The first payment data were published in 2014.
In 2018, 26.8% of payments were compensation for services other than consulting, including serving as faculty or as a speaker at a venue other than a continuing education program. Royalty or license fees accounted for 21.5% of payments, consulting fees made up 20.1%, and food, beverage, travel, and lodging combined accounted for 20.2%.
The largest total amount of payments went to physicians and teaching hospitals in California, Florida, New York, Pennsylvania and Texas. California providers received more than $306 million in 2018.
The largest average individual payments were for doctors and teaching facilities in North Dakota, at $15,660, followed by Minnesota, at $5,649, and Tennessee, at $5,514.