HQIP ethical collaboration policy statement
We seek to work with a range of organisations to support all aspects of our work, and where appropriate to generate income. Collaborations may include, among other things, sponsorship agreements, consultancy and partnership working.
All income-generating activities are conducted in pursuit of our mission statement and values. We wish to develop and maintain mutually beneficial relationships with commercial and other health-related organisations without comprising our independence.
HQIP is an independent, not for profit organisation that works in partnership with patients and professionals to improve the quality of healthcare outcomes. We exist to commission, manage and promote national and local programmes of quality improvement, and critically we give patients a voice in the design and delivery of our work.
In this context, HQIP seeks to work with a range of organisations to support all aspects of its work, and where appropriate to generate income. Collaborations may include among other things sponsorship agreements, consultancy and partnership working. All income-generating activities are conducted in pursuit of HQIP’s mission statement and values.
We wish to develop and maintain mutually beneficial relationships with commercial and other health-related organisations without comprising our independence.
- Independence and reputation: HQIP is very careful when working with other organisations that its independent status and reputation is not compromised in any way. If there is a possibility that this may be placed in jeopardy HQIP will withdraw from any such initiative.
- Transparency: HQIP will be transparent about who it is working with and the nature of the relationship and the work. It will always be made explicit what each party is bringing and gaining from a formal relationship.
- Integrity: HQIP will ensure that all relationships are governed by a formal written agreement, that partners subscribe to this ethical collaboration policy, and that each partnership has been approved and is overseen by HQIP’s governance structures.
- Outcomes focus: HQIP will seek partners whose goals, values and actions promote or enable good health, and in particular bring benefits to patients. Specifically, HQIP will not work with any organisation that is associated with tobacco, arms or alcohol. Each partner will be judged on a case by case basis.
Conflicts of interest
When establishing a new collaboration, both parties should endeavour to ensure that there are no conflicts of interest that cannot be safely managed. To help ensure potential conflicts of interest are identified and managed appropriately:
- HQIP gives no warranty that the deliverables of a partnership will not contain any material that may be disadvantageous to its partner’s business or area of work (for example, research findings, regardless of whether they support a partner’s work or position).
- Speaker places at HQIP events are determined by HQIP on merit and cannot be determined by any formal partnership arrangements.
- Sponsors will have no control over analysis, conclusions, positions or recommendations by HQIP.
- HQIP will be open about other collaborations with organisations working in the same areas or sectors and expects the same approach from its partners.
- HQIP will not allow direct access to its customers and contacts by third parties (other than those generated directly by collaboration).
- HQIP will not allow partners to link or imply direct material benefits for their products through association with HQIP.
Obligations of partners
- In the event of any matter arising which could adversely affect the standing or business viability of the partner, the partner must inform HQIP as soon as reasonably practical. HQIP reserves the right to take action to ensure its reputation is not adversely affected as a result of such incidents.
- All agreements are exchanged in writing and partners are required to endorse and abide by HQIP’s ethical collaboration policy.
- For member companies of the Association of British Pharmaceutical Industry (ABPI), and also for those pharmaceutical companies that are not members of the ABPI, such collaboration arrangements should comply with the ABPI Code of Practice.
- HQIP requires assurance from the partner organisation (before HQIP undertakes any work) that there is equal/equity of access to healthcare for all individuals regardless of gender, race, ethnicity and ability to pay.
- HQIP should be consulted whenever and wherever its name is used by partners in internal and external communications. Approval must be sought for any copy produced which refers to an initiative from HQIP that is supported / sponsored by a partner. At no time can HQIP’s logo be used without express written permission for every occasion it is used.
- At no time can press releases or online media be used that refer to HQIP without HQIP’s prior approval.
- Each party retains ownership of its own intellectual property already in existence before the date of the collaboration, or which has been created otherwise than in the course of the collaboration. New intellectual property created in the course of the collaboration is the property of the organisation which creates it.
- Staff on both sides should beware the potential for bias generated through partnerships, where this might impinge on professional judgement and impartiality.
- Both parties commit to confidentiality requirements at all times.
HQIP would like to acknowledge that this policy draws on The King’s Fund’s ethical collaboration policy.