II. Compliance Program Elements H. Responding to Detected Problems and Developing Corrective Action Initiatives
Violation of a pharmaceutical manufacturer’s compliance program, failure to comply with applicable federal or state law, and other types of misconduct threaten the company’s status as a reliable, honest, and trustworthy participant in the health care industry. Detected but uncorrected misconduct can endanger the reputation and legal status of the company. Consequently, upon receipt of reasonable indications of suspected noncompliance, it is important that the compliance officer or other management officials immediately investigate the allegations to determine whether a material violation of applicable law or the requirements of the compliance program has occurred and, if so, take decisive steps to correct the problem.19 The exact nature and level of thoroughness of the investigation will vary according to the circumstances, but the review should be detailed enough to identify the root cause of the problem. As appropriate, the investigation may include a corrective action plan, a report and repayment to the government, and/ or a referral to criminal and/or civil law enforcement authorities.