Addressing legacy legal issues
Novartis resolved several legacy litigation matters in 2020. We reached settlements with the US Department of Justice and the US Securities and Exchange Commission, resolving all Foreign Corrupt Practices Act investigations into historical conduct by the company and its subsidiaries. Specifically, with respect to allegations pertaining to our subsidiary in Greece, the resolutions contained no allegations relating to any bribery of Greek politicians, which is consistent with what Novartis found in its own internal investigation. We also resolved a civil suit pending in the US District Court for the Southern District of New York challenging speaker programs and other promotional events conducted from 2002 through 2011 by Novartis Pharmaceuticals Corporation in the US. As part of this settlement, Novartis will continue to evolve its approach to peer-to-peer medical education in the US by transitioning predominantly to digital formats. Going forward, we aim to set the standard by embracing new, digitally enabled education programs that will help physicians keep pace with medical innovation and support better outcomes for patients.
Commitment to transparency and disclosure
Transparent reporting and disclosure play a key role in building trust with society. We aim to be open and clearly disclose what we do, how we work, where we are successful and where we face challenges. This applies across all aspects of our business around the world, including clinical trials, interactions with healthcare professionals, and patient group funding. For more disclosures, visit our website.