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Germany ∙ Compliance: 18 Months Of The German Act On Fighting Corruption In The Healthcare Sector

Christian Tillmanns


The German Act on Fighting Corruption in the Healthcare Sector 2016 complements the already existing criminal offences against corrupt behaviour with provisions for the protection of fair competition in the healthcare sector as well as the (public’s) trust in the integrity of healthcare-related decisions, especially with regard to healthcare professionals licenced for the statutory health insurance scheme. The newly established provisions, sections 299a and 299b of the German Criminal Code 1998 (StGB), apply to the prescription and/or procurement of medicinal products, healthcare-services and products and medical devices as well as the referral of patients and test materials. While the new provisions eschew any direct reference to regulations of professional conduct and/or other provisions, the interpretation of the new law relies heavily on the adherence to provisions outside the Criminal Code, such as physician’s professional law. One and half years after the law has come into force it can be said that the main focus of the prosecutors is not the cooperation between pharmaceutical and medical device industry but the unlawful cooperation between the industry and physicians and/or hospitals. To avoid sufficient initial suspicion and following dawn raids by official prosecutors it is crucial for all players (industry, HCP’s) to bear the professional codes in mind as well as the relevant codes of conduct (FSA code of conduct, AKG code of conduct).

Dr. Christian Tillmanns, Partner at Meisterernst Law Firm, Munich. For correspondence: <>


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