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German industry keeps close eye on undue pressure on suppliers:

This article was originally published in Clinica

Executive Summary

Customers seeking discounts from suppliers - in whatever industry sector - is common business practice. German medtech industry association Spectaris notes, however, that pressure from clinics on suppliers to alter price schedules to suit a single - albeit economically important - customer (or group of customers acting as a cartel) effectively contravenes the law on unfair competition (UWG). This is the case if the supplier is constrained by the action of a hospital or clinic in such a way as to prevent it from acting freely. In the era of diagnosis-related groups (DRGs) and tighter budgets, resulting from past and ongoing health finance reforms, the issue is one that industry needs to keep an eye on, feels Spectaris. The association's Harald Hartmann (hartmann@spectaris.de) is currently assessing the extent of the problem.

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