Engaging in Public Policy Responsibly

Merck is committed to participating constructively and responsibly in the political process. Government proposals to regulate the health care system may directly affect the company's business and incentives for pharmaceutical innovation. Also, there are important policy initiatives that can further the company's goals with respect to increasing patient access to medicines and vaccines -- particularly for patients in disadvantaged communities and regions -- and, most importantly, to health care insurance coverage. It is appropriate for the company to help inform the debate on these issues in the United States and in other countries, and to do so in a responsible and ethical way.

Merck's participation in the political process is guided by the following principles:

  • Improving patient access to health care, including to medicines and vaccines, and
  • Encouraging innovation, including by protecting intellectual property rights; through government support of basic research; and by supporting efficient and effective regulatory systems.

Merck's Executive Committee has overall governing responsibility for Merck's public policy strategy, as guided by Merck's Board Committee on Public Policy and Social Responsibility. Merck's Global Public Policy Leadership Team, headed by the Vice President of Global Public Policy & Corporate Responsibility, leads the development and communication of policy positions on major issues. Position statements summarizing Merck's position on key public policy issues are posted on our public policy page.

For more information on how we engage in public policy, including information on corporate political contributions, trade associations and our disclosure reports, please click here.