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Nearly 100 doctors face summons over alleged illegal 'rebates'

Jan. 18, 2013 - 15:42 By 양승진

 Nearly 100 doctors will be scrutinized for allegedly receiving illegal kickbacks from pharmaceutical companies, sources said Friday.

   The doctors are accused of accepting money or other kickbacks, known as "rebates," worth more than 3 million won (US$2,840) each, from drug makers in exchange for prescribing their products, prosecution officials and pharmaceutical industry sources said.

   Some of them were already notified to appear before prosecutors for questioning, according to the officials.

   The government last year declared a war against the long-running illegal practice in the pharmaceutical industry that drives up costs to patients. The prosecution has since intensified its probe into the practice in line with the government efforts.

   Earlier this month, the prosecution indicted seven former and incumbent executives of the country's largest drug manufacturer, Donga Pharmaceutical Co., on charges of offering massive rebates worth 4.8 billion won to doctors and hospital officials.

(Yonhap News)