ABPI Principles

The following principles for pharmaceutical companies are seen by the ABPI as key to how we operate as an industry and build trust and enhance our reputation. Companies are expected to implement and work to embed these into their organisation.

Patients are at the heart of our industry. We aspire to ensure that everything we do will ultimately benefit patients. Our primary contribution to society is to research and develop high quality medicines and to encourage their appropriate and rational use. Patient safety is paramount.

Ethical relationships with stakeholders are critical to our mission of helping patients, guiding the appropriate use of our medicines and ensuring the appropriate and timely exchange of scientific information.

An important guide for such ethical relationships is adherence to the ABPI Code of Practice which, among other things, sets the standards and drives an ethical culture in the industry. This is delivered through self-regulation. Our industry, and the individuals within it, are committed to supporting that culture, working within both the letter and the spirit of the ABPI Code and all relevant laws and regulations.


In adhering to the ABPI Code, we follow four key principles:

developed by the ABPI
Some examples of how we demonstrate the principle in our behaviour
1. We are committed to benefiting PATIENTS and ensuring patient safety by operating in a professional, ethical and transparent manner to ensure the appropriate and rational use of medicines and to support the provision of high quality healthcare. All interactions with patients and other stakeholders must comply with all applicable laws and regulations. • We promote only within the terms of the marketing authorisation.

• We do not advertise prescription only medicines to the public (other than vaccination campaigns approved by the health ministers).

• While our activities can encourage members of the public to seek treatment, they must not promote the use of a specific prescription only medicine.

• We ensure that all information is accurate, fair and balanced.

• We act promptly when advised of adverse events and encourage the use of the MHRA Yellow Card Scheme to support patient safety.
2. We act with INTEGRITY and commit to engaging in relationships which are responsible, professional, ethical and transparent. We ensure that all our communications are appropriate, accurate, factual, fair, balanced, up-to-date, not misleading, capable of substantiation and reflect the available evidence, and that all other activities are appropriate and reasonable and of the highest standards. • We are accountable for the activities of both our staff and third party providers.

• We do not offer any improper payments, benefits, inducements, or anything of value to influence actions or decisions, obtain or retain business, or otherwise secure any improper advantage, either directly or indirectly, to any individual, organisation or stakeholder.
3. We are committed to ensuring that TRANSPARENCY is respected. We are open about our activities and interactions with all stakeholders and encourage our stakeholders to act with the same openness. • We disclose certain transfers of value to health professionals, other relevant decision makers, healthcare organisations, institutions etc and payments made to patient organisations and the public, including patients and journalists.

• We publish details of ongoing and completed clinical trials via relevant databases and registries.

• We do not disguise promotion.

• Company involvement in all materials and activities is made clear from the outset.
4. We interact with all our stakeholders with RESPECT. We are committed to approach our stakeholders in an open and constructive manner and with mutual respect. • We recognise and seek to balance the needs of patients, health professionals and the public, taking into account the environment within which the industry operates and the statutory controls governing medicines.

• We value the importance of independent decision-making by all those we interact with.