Conference Vetting System: Assessment Criteria
Each conference submitted under the EthicalMedTech Conference Vetting System for assessment is evaluated by the Compliance Officer in accordance with the principles and standards set out in the Eucomed Code of Ethical Business Practice. Consideration is also given to the image that will be projected to the public should industry directly sponsor Healthcare Professionals to attend a particular conference.
The sole purpose of the System is to assist Eucomed members and members of national associations affiliated with Eucomed in determining whether or not to sponsor Healthcare Professionals to attend third party conferences. Healthcare Professionals who are not sponsored by Eucomed members or members of national associations affiliated with Eucomed do not fall within the scope of the System.
Please note that:
- The rendered decisions are based on the documents and information provided to the Compliance Officer via the online submission form. The Compliance Officer does not independently verify whether the information or documents are up-to-date.
- Decisions do not take into account nor supplant national and local laws, regulations or professional and company codes that may impose more stringent requirements upon members or HCPs.
- Conference scientific programme sessions are reviewed, but not the value of their scientific content.
- The Eucomed Code requires Eucomed members to notify in writing the Healthcare Professional’s hospital administration, superior or locally designated competent authority with a full description of the purpose and scope of all sponsorship provided. It incumbent upon each Eucomed member to comply with this requirement.
The Conference Programme
- The schedule of the scientific conference programme – The detailed programme should present a clear schedule with no gaps during the conference scientific sessions (i.e., a minimum of 6 hours for full conference day/ 3 hours for a half day), the faculty for each session must be identified, the session topics must be serious medical subjects.
- The availability of the programme in advance – The programme should be available at least 90 days prior to the conference and contain sufficient information to enable an evaluation of the scientific value of the sessions and permit companies to notify each sponsored HCP's hospital administration, superior or locally designated competent authority.
- The relevance of the programme – The programme content should directly relate to specialty and/or medical practice of the HCP who will attend the conference or have a sufficiently reasonable relationship to justify the attendance of the HCPs. Minor components of the agenda content relating to non-scientific topics, such as leadership skills, practice management, and speaking and presentation skills are acceptable.
The Geographic Location
- The geographic location – The geographic location should be in or near a city or town which is a scientific or business centre conducive to exchange of ideas and the transmission of knowledge. The geographic location should not be the main attraction of the conference.
- The time of the year – The selected time of the year will be taken into account in determining if a geographic location is appropriate. For European and international events, ski resorts in the ski season, island resorts, beach resorts and other geographic locations renowned primarily as seasonal vacation or holiday destinations are not appropriate geographic locations during the season in question. The appropriateness of a geographic location may be assessed differently for strictly local events attended by local healthcare professionals.
- The central location – Taking into account the place of origin of HCP delegates, the geographic location must be centrally located. If the HCP delegates are primarily from one country, the geographic location of the conference should be in that country. If the participants are from multiple countries, then a country affording ease of access for participants should be chosen. The country selected should be the residence of at least some of the Healthcare participants of the meeting.
- The ease of access – The geographic location should have ease of access for the attendees (for example, close proximity to airports, train stations, highways) and have good ground transportation infrastructure.
Conference Venue Facility
- The Conference Venue – The conference venue should be a business or commercial center with providing conference facilities conductive to the exchange of scientific and medical information and the transmission of knowledge. It should not be the main attraction of the conference. The image of the location among the public, media and authorities cannot be perceived as purely luxury, touristic/holiday and/or entertainment venue.
Hospitality & Accommodation
- The reasonableness of hospitality – Hospitality should be limited to reasonable hotel accommodation and meals, coffee breaks, and a conference dinner or cocktail reception which all HCP delegates are expected to attend. Entertainment is not allowed except for example for background music during the dinner or cocktail reception. Hospitality should be modest and incidental and should not be excessive and/or constitute "entertainment". Entertainment includes, but is not limited to, dancing or arrangements where live music is the main attraction, sight-seeing trips, theatre excursions, sporting events and other leisure arrangements.
- The hospitality offered to spouses, partners, family and/or guests subject to a separate charge – This category of person may not benefit from hospitality sponsored by Eucomed members. Any hospitality offered to them must be the subject of a separate charge which may not be paid for nor reimbursed by Eucomed members.
- The appropriateness of accommodation – Eucomed members may not pay for or reimburse HCP lodging expenses at top category or luxury hotels.
- The accommodation to be limited to the duration of the conference – Accommodation and/or other services provided to HCP delegates should not cover a period of stay beyond the official duration of the conference.
Spouses, partners, family & guests
- Spouses, partners, family and/or guests' packages may not be paid for by Eucomed members – This category of person may not register for the conference or participate in the scientific programme (unless he or she is a qualified HCP with a legitimate interest in the programme).
- The social programme - Any social, sporting and/or leisure activities or other forms of entertainment must be outside of the programme schedule and paid for separately by the HCP delegates. They should not dominate or interfere with the overall scientific content of the programme and must be held during times that do not overlap with scientific session. They should not be the main attraction of the conference.
- The program advertising - Advertising support (brochures, website and other materials) should highlight the scientific nature of the programme content. They should not overly emphasize the geographic location and should not make excessive or inappropriate references to or contain images of entertainment, sporting events or other non-scientific activities.
- The registration fee - The registration fee should cover only the scientific programme and authorized activities and hospitality.