UC Professors Shortchange the System by Failing to Report Outside Income

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The UCLA campus appears in an undated photo. (Credit: Mel Melcon / Los Angeles Times)

The UCLA campus appears in an undated photo. (Credit: Mel Melcon / Los Angeles Times)

For nearly two decades, Dr. Neal Hermanowicz has led the movement disorders program at UC Irvine, where he earns more than $380,000 a year in salary and bonuses. The widely respected expert on Parkinson’s and Huntington’s diseases adds to his income by consulting for drug companies.

Since 2014, 11 pharmaceutical companies have paid him a total of at least $588,000 in consulting and speaking fees and honorariums, according to federal data. For example, he has received more than $225,000 in speaking and consulting fees from San Diego-based Acadia Pharmaceuticals, manufacturer of a controversial drug for Parkinson’s-related psychosis. In 2017, he was the company’s highest-paid physician consultant in the U.S. That year, he prescribed the drug more than 180 times, costing patients or their insurers more than $445,000.

Under University of California rules aimed at discouraging excessive moonlighting, Hermanowicz should have reported his outside income to UC Irvine. He also should have turned over more than $200,000 of it to the school from 2016 to 2018, according to UC Irvine policies. His academic department would then have decided how much to keep and how much to return to him.

But that didn’t happen, because Hermanowicz did not report to UC Irvine any payments from pharmaceutical companies from 2014 to 2018, according to internal campus documents.

Read the full story at LATimes.com.

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