Oregon Department of Justice

Attorney General Ellen F. Rosenblum

Oregon Department of Justice - Attorney General Ellen F. Rosenblum
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April 13, 2006

Attorney General Hardy Myers today announced the initial selection of 24 grantees for funding by the Attorney General Consumer and Prescriber Education Grant Program. Oregon will act as Grantor for all 24 grants and Oregon organizations will receive two of the Grants. The Portland Veterans Hospital in conjunction with the Oregon Health & Science University and the Oregon Health Policy and Research program in partnership with an Oregon State University College of Pharmacy program will receive approximately $750,000 in grant money from the $9.4 million to be distributed over the next two years to the 24 successful grant recipients from respected research, educational and professional institutions nationwide.

The purpose of these grants is to educate health care professionals about pharmaceutical industry marketing practices and to provide strategies for accessing unbiased sources of information about drugs. The Attorney General Consumer and Prescriber Grant Program is funded through the 2004 Attorneys General settlement resolving allegations that Warner Lambert violated state consumer protection laws when promoting Neurontin for off- label uses.  Oregon is trustee for the more than $28 million received under the settlement for use in various remediation programs.

"As one of the lead states in the Warner-Lambert case, we are particularly pleased to be able to fund two Oregon programs. These grants will help to foster rational prescribing practices so that prescribing is based on evidence and not advertising."

Currently, pharmaceutical companies reportedly spend more than $12 billion per year in the United States marketing their products. "These billions of dollars total more than is spent on all medical education in this nation as a whole," Myers said.

Attorney General Myers explained that the grant program is a step toward advancing independent prescriber and consumer education regarding the marketing of pharmaceutical products.   Besides grants for prescriber education, there also will be grants to educate consumers on related issues.  Overall, the Attorney General Consumer and Prescriber Grant Program anticipates making over $21 million in grants.

Under the terms of the Warner Lambert settlement, a Special Committee consisting of the Attorneys General of  Oregon, Vermont, Florida, New York, Ohio, Texas, and two-year rotating positions from two other state Attorneys General offices, is responsible for administering the Attorney General Consumer and Prescriber Education Program.  California and North Carolina Attorneys General offices are completing their two-year term on the Special Committee, and will soon be replaced by Attorneys General from the states of Maine and Washington.

The Center for Evidence-based Policy at Oregon Health and Science University is the current grant administrator for the program.  The Public Health Institute served as the prior Administrator.

"Although only two grantees are located in Oregon, many of the grants will have a direct impact on our state: the National Center for Farmworker Health grant will directly effect clinics located in Oregon and the Federation of State Medical Boards Education and Research Foundation and AMA grants will fund educational  programs which directly support Oregon physicians.," Myers said.  

These grants represent a concerted effort to develop educational materials for both physicians and consumers about the marketing techniques of the pharmaceutical industry, and provide information about how to evaluate critically the claims the pharmaceutical industry makes about its products.

"We are confident that work of the grant recipients will mean better informed prescribing patterns for tens of thousands of physicians, clinical pharmacists, nurse practitioners, physician assistants, psychiatric nurses, and future prescribers such as medical and pharmacy students across the nation," Myers said.

The initial grant recipients are:

Harvard Pilgrim
Health Care

American Medical

University of

University of


Brigham & Women's

University of

University of California –
San Francisco

University of North
Carolina Chapel Hill

University of

Meyers Primary
Care Institute

Wake Forest

Northeastern Ohio
Universities College
of Medicine


University of Alabama-

Portland VA
Research Foundation

Oregon Health Policy
and Research

Kaiser Health Plan
of Colorado

Lovelace Clinic

Massachusetts General
Hospital Institute of
Health Professionals


University of
Georgia School
of Pharmacy

National Center
for Farmworker Health

Federation of State
Medical Boards Education
and Research Foundation

The Special Committee will be conducting additional grant solicitations in the future.  Information regarding future grants will be posted on the website for the National Association for Attorneys General, www.naag.org.

Consumers wanting more information about consumer protection in Oregon may call the Attorney General's Consumer Hotline at (503) 378-4320 (Salem area only), (503) 229-5576 (Portland area only) or toll-free at 1-877-877-9392. Oregon Justice is online at www.doj.state.or.us.


Kevin Neely, Justice, (503) 378-6002
Dr. John Santa, OHSU, (503) 494-2691 |
Dr. Martha Gerrity, Portland VA, (503) 494-6656 |
Dr. Kathy Weaver, OHPR, (503) 378-2422 |
AAG David Hart, OR DOJ, (503) 947-4333 |
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