Pharmaceutical companies, which fund approximately half of all biomedical research,1 are now leaders in the publication and disclosure of research.2,3 However, access to much company-funded research is restricted by journal paywalls.4 We, as Open Pharma, a group of pharmaceutical companies and other research funders, alongside healthcare professionals, regulators, patients, publishers and other stakeholders in healthcare, recognize the importance of publishing research with open access, where papers can be read without payment of a one-off access charge or subscription. Open access ensures that the highest quality, peer-reviewed evidence is available to anyone who needs it, anywhere in the world. Publishing with open access improves transparency, advances medical science and, we believe, ultimately improves patient care.
Our immediate priority
Our immediate priority is to secure authors publishing company-funded research the same right to publish open access as authors publishing research funded by other sources, so that all research can be made free to read from the date of publication. This would enable pharmaceutical companies to follow the lead of other research funders in requiring all the research they fund to be published with open access, without impacting on journal choice.5-7 In order to provide publishers the time to adapt their policies and protect their copyright interests, any variant of Creative Commons or equivalent licence could be used.
Our long-term goal
Our long-term goal is to secure authors publishing company-funded research the same terms as authors publishing research funded by other sources, so that all research can be made free to read – and reuse – from the date of publication. This would enable pharmaceutical companies to follow the lead of other research funders in maximizing the impact of the research they fund on patient health. Open Pharma is committed to working closely with publishers and pharmaceutical companies to ensure that the gold standard Creative Commons Attribution (CC BY) licence can sustainably be used.8
This Open Pharma position statement on open access represents the opinions of the individual members: Catherine Skobe (Pfizer), Chris Rains (Takeda), Chris Winchester (Oxford PharmaGenesis), Julie Newman (Gilead), Lise Baltzer (Novo Nordisk), Sarah Sabir (Oxford PharmaGenesis) and Valerie Philippon (Takeda), and not necessarily those of their individual companies. We thank the members, supporters and followers of Open Pharma for their input and valuable discussion.
- Dorsey ER, de Roulet J, Thompson JP et al. Funding of US biomedical research, 2003–2008. JAMA 2010;303:137–43.
- Baronikova S, Purvis J, Southam E et al. Commitments by the biopharmaceutical industry to clinical trial transparency: the evolving environment. BMJ Evidence-Based Medicine 2019:bmjebm–2018–111145.
- Warren M. Big pharma is embracing open-access publishing like never before. Nature, 2019. Available from: https://www.nature.com/articles/d41586-019-00610-2 (Accessed 3 October 2019).
- Ellison TS, Koder T, Schmidt L, Williams A, Winchester CC. Open access policies of leading medical journals: a cross-sectional study. BMJ Open 2019;9:e028655.
- Collins E. Publishing priorities of biomedical research funders. BMJ Open 2013;3:e004171.
- Baronikova S, Desai SY, Philippon V, Rains CP. An assessment of open access publishing at Shire before and after implementation of the open access publication policy. Curr Med Res Opin 2019;35(Suppl 2):31.
- Lang H, Winchester CC, Gattrell W. Open access publishing of research affiliated to Ipsen, 2013–2017: a baseline assessment. Curr Med Res Opin 2019;35(Suppl 2):39.
- Tennant JP, Waldner F, Jacques DC et al. The academic, economic and societal impacts of Open Access: an evidence-based review. F1000Res 2016;5:632.
ecancer; F1000 Research Ltd.; Wiley
Ataxia & Me; Autoinflammatory UK; Cambridge Rare Disease Network; Galapagos NV; International Kidney Cancer Coalition; Kidney Research UK; Observational and Pragmatic Research Institute Pte; Oxford Health Policy Forum; Oxford PharmaGenesis; Pedalling4ACure; Solanum Medical Communications Ltd.; SUDEP Action; The Aarskog Foundation; ThinkSCIENCE, Inc.; Zimbabwe Evidence Informed Policy Network
Mary Kunjappu, Alexion Pharmaceuticals; Alan Thomas, Ataxia & Me; Scott Armit, Ataxia & Me; E. Andrew Balas, Biomedical Research Innovation Laboratory, Augusta University; John Wallace, Autoinflammatory UK; Gavin Giovannoni, Barts and the London School of Medicine and Dentistry; Val Tate, communications consultant; Katie Foxall, ecancer; Linda Edmonson, Innovative Strategic Communications; Martin Delahunty, Inspiring STEM; Alben Sigamani, Narayana Health; Michael De Rosa, National Ataxia Foundation; Peter Llewellyn, NetworkPharma Ltd.; Pali Hungin, Newcastle University; Klaus Boberg, Novo Nordisk; Kajsa Wilhelmsson, Oxford Health System Reform Group; Adele Buss, Oxford PharmaGenesis; Cassy Fiford, Oxford PharmaGenesis; Emma Bolton, Oxford PharmaGenesis; Francesca Ounsworth, Oxford PharmaGenesis; Jessica Hardy, Oxford PharmaGenesis; Mark Rolfe, Oxford PharmaGenesis; Nicolas Bertheleme, Oxford PharmaGenesis; Paul Farrow, Oxford PharmaGenesis; Richard White, Oxford PharmaGenesis; Sally Bardell, Oxford PharmaGenesis; Tim Ellison, Oxford PharmaGenesis; Tim Koder, Oxford PharmaGenesis; Zoe Watts, Oxford PharmaGenesis; Charles Boyce, patient; Emily Medina, patient; Jeannie Smithball, patient; Danielle Grover, patient advocate; Elizabeth Kinder, patient advocate; Richard Stephens, patient advocate; Tracy Zervakis, patient advocate; Trishna Bharadia, patient advocate; Rosario Strano, Pedalling4Cure; Angela Sykes, Pfizer; Courtney Leo, Pfizer; J.R. Meloro, Pfizer; Ellie Challis, PTEN UK & Ireland; Dermot Ryan, Respiratory Effectiveness Group; Victoria Woods, Patient and Public Engagement, Thames Valley Cancer Alliance at NHS England; Sophie Berry, Smith & Nephew; John Gonzalez, Solanum Medical Communications Ltd.; Zbys Fedorowicz, The Care Combine and North West Anglia NHS Foundation Trust; Stuart Taylor, The Royal Society; Erik Michels, UCB; Rachel Giles, Regenerative Medicine Center, UMC Utrecht; Meredith Hays, Department of Medicine, Uniformed Services University; Martin Rossor, University College London; Stephen Bradley, University of Leeds; Robert Sim, Department of Respiratory Science, University of Leicester; Iain Chalmers, Centre for Evidence-Based Medicine, University of Oxford; Edith Sim, Department of Pharmacology, University of Oxford; Chas Bountra, Nuffield Department of Clinical Medicine, University of Oxford; Stevan Harnad, University of Southampton; Álvaro Díaz, Departmento de Biociencias, Universidad de la República, Uruguay; Ronald Munatsi, Zimbabwe Evidence Informed Policy Network
Endorsements last updated on 8 November 2019
Available to download: https://doi.org/10.6084/m9.figshare.10003304