We’ve heard from pharmaceutical and medical supply clients that reporting the right information for the Sunshine Act is a top priority. Yet the federal government has continued to change the reporting requirements. With the approach of January 1, 2012, the date the act goes into place nationally, the need for the pharmaceutical and medical supply industry to get a better understanding of reporting needs has increased.
While you’d expect that the bulk of reporting would come from clinical trials or speaker programs, the majority actually comes from travel and entertainment expenses. The smallest of receipts require the greatest amount of tracking and reporting time.
Shire Pharmaceuticals, one of the world’s leading specialty biopharmaceutical companies, used to rely on each employee to manually track and process expenses as it related to health care spend, using up enormous amounts of time to do so. “Before Concur, we would have to review each expense report, and each expense line item manually,” says Georgeann Flinn, T&E Administrator of Shire Pharmaceuticals.
“We’d open an Excel spreadsheet and manually type in a doctor’s name and the amount of money spent into the spreadsheet. After all that, we wouldn’t know if we were capturing everything. Or if we were capturing the right doctor,” says Flinn. “For example, how many Dr. Smiths are in the same hospital? It was like shooting in the dark, hoping we selected the right Dr. Smith. So, we’d complete the expense report and the reporting necessary thinking ‘Here it is—we hope it’s correct.’”
With Concur, they’ve been able to take the guesswork out of reporting and tracking, especially critical when penalty fees are steep. For unknowingly reporting a transaction or payment, a company will be fined $10,000; for knowingly not reporting it, the fine is $100,000.
Shire relies on Concur to help record all the critical details. Shire Pharmaceuticals has doctors names, ID numbers, addresses, offices, specialties and other fields built into Concur, so the solution automatically tracks attendees.
“Concur helps us gather all the information we need to track our T&E spend,” Flinn says. “With built-in rules within the system, we force our employees to classify each expense type. So, there’s no way to go around the system. Which means we get accurate reporting every time.”
Flinn continues, “Often, our sales people meet with the same doctor month in and month out. With Concur, the salesperson’s most used doctors appear as favorites. So, automatically all the data needed to complete the report is already listed right within Concur. Now, when our sales team logs into Concur to file expenses and track HCP, they’re good to go.”
Flinn knows that with Concur on her side, keeping her apprised of changes, providing solutions to her tracking and reporting needs, she has a trusted partner that she can rely on.