Have you ever wondered whether or not the speaker giving your continuing education lecture or the department head molding young minds is being paid, by whom and how much? By law, publicly traded companies like ORMCO, Align Technology, Forestadent and Henry Schein to name a few, must report all payments to doctors to the Centers for Medicaid. Privately held companies and study clubs do not have to report what they pay lecturers but you can certainly ask for details about these speakers and their pay. If the company or speakers are unwilling to share then doesn’t that tell you all you need to know? Under the Open Payments program of the CMS, you can search their database to see whether a provider has received payments.

Here is the link:

https://openpaymentsdata.cms.gov/

Have a look and you’ll likely be as shocked as we were at what some experts are being paid – to quote Gomer Pyle, “Surprise, Surprise, Surprise!”

To be clear, we have zero issue with orthodontists being paid for their time. That’s the way of the world. The point here is that if someone is making a significant percentage of their income hocking product, it may be a good idea to take what they say with a grain of salt or at least be aware of the fact.

Marc Ackerman

Ben Burris

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