Life Science Compliance Update

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April 03, 2009

Michael Bigelow, JD 1967 – 2009 (Pioneer in Corporate Transparency)


Eli Lilly Assistant General Counsel, Mike Bigelow, passed away this week from pancreatic cancer.  Mike was a young man, only 42 years old, he left behind a wife and three children, and he also left his mark on the world. 

Sometime in 2006, Mike submitted to the leadership at Eli Lilly that they should put out their grants and payments to physicians for all to see.  He considered that in reality they had nothing to hide.  At the time, this must have been considered a wild idea, but it worked, the leadership at Eli Lilly embraced it and put Mike in-charge of the project.  In the summer of 2007, Lilly launched its educational grants disclosure website.

Mike truly understood both the legal world and the political world.  Working on refinements for the Physician Payment Sunshine Act in 2008, and his work was largely responsible for Eli Lilly being the first pharmaceutical company to endorse the Act.

I had visited with Mike at conferences several times this year.  Mike’s response was always “you may be happy to be here, but I am really happy to be here.” 

At a meeting a couple of weeks ago, Mike leaned over, whispered to me a question, to ask some prosecutors who were presenting to see if they thought pharmaceutical companies did anything good.  They did not.

It is impressive that Mike lived life to the fullest even until the end.  He never quit and kept fighting.

His enthusiasm and dry humor will be missed.

Memorial contributions                

Mike had requested that memorial contributions be made to his children’s college education account. Please make any memorial checks payable to: CollegeChoice Advisor 529 Plan. They can be sent to: 12368 Sanderling Trace, Fishers, IN 46037.


RX Compliance Report: Remembering Mike Bigelow

Indianapolis Star:  Mike Bigelow

Funeral Home Obituary:  Michael Patrick Bigelow

Articles Quoting Mike

The Wall Street Journal: Drug Maker Lilly Discloses Funding

The Hill: Eli Lilly Breaks with Drug Industry Over Doctor Payment Disclosure Bill

Medical Meetings: Rethinking the Lifeline

Medical Marketing and Media: Medical Education Report:  CME’s Open Gesture

Adverse Event Reporting News:  Lilly, Zimmer back transparency on M.D. perks

RX Compliance Report: Case Study Implementation of Eli Lilly’s Physician Payment Disclosure Initiative

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