Commission halaal or haraam?: brother im a doctor by profession and recently a representative of a drug company
As Salaam Aleikum wa Rahmatullahi wa Barakatuh. (May Allah's Peace, Mercy and Blessings be upon all of you)
One of our brothers/sisters has asked this question:
assalam alaikum dear brother.. my question is that whether taking commission haalal or haraam in islam.... brother im a doctor by profession and recently a representative of a drug company came to me and said that if i prescribe his brand of medicines then his company would give me 30% share of the cost....is it haraam or halaal brother? the medicine companies come to doctors and ask them to prescribe their brand of medicine for a particular composition(there are hundreds of brand name medicines for each composition,eg paracetamol comes in hundreds of brand names),and they offer various incentives in return,like they say if u prescribe our brand name then we will give u 30% of the amount of medicines u have prescribed,say for 100 rs medicines they'll give 30 rs......or they say they can give a vacation trip sponsored by them,etc etc in return... my ques is that is it permissible in islam to accept share from them,my point is that anyhow we have to write one brand or the other,so is there any harm in accepting something which a particular brand person is giving....i mean anyhow the patient is going to get the medicine at the same cost,there will be no burden extra to the patient,and if the company gives 30% of the cost of the medicine from their share of profit,then is it permissible to strike a deal with the company prior to prescribing.......similarly while writing some investigations like ultrasound,blood tests etc the diagnostic centres offer cuts,so is it permissible to accept such cuts,as the cost of the tests to the patient remains same and the diagnostic centre gives cuts out off their income so that they continue receiving patients from that doctor...... now brother,on a different perspective if above things are haraam then what about not striking any prior deal and still after being happy that u prescribed their brand,the company gives some gifts like electronic equipments or any other small gifts then are they permissible to accept?? brother almost all businesses today involve commission,like an electronics retail store...whatever items it sells it gets commission from its maker,eg if a retail outlet sells a sony tv then out of its mrp paid by customer some % is taken by the retailer and rest goes to company....so isnt it also a commission based system?is it permissible?
Jazakallah khairun brother.
(There may be some grammatical and spelling errors in the above statement. The forum does not change anything from questions, comments and statements received from our readers for circulation in confidentiality.)
In the name of Allah, We praise Him, seek His help and ask for His forgiveness. Whoever Allah guides none can misguide, and whoever He allows to fall astray, none can guide them aright. We bear witness that there is none worthy of worship but Allah Alone, and we bear witness that Muhammad (saws) is His slave-servant and the seal of His Messengers.
Respected brother, the concept of traders or businesses accepting commission from the manufacturers for promoting their product is not considered unlawful or 'haraam' in Shariah. On the face of it, all the transactions which you have stated in your question are well within the prescribed boundaries of what is considered lawful in Shariah Law.
Having said that, a medical professional, or a doctor in particular, bears a greater moral responsiblity towards its customers (patients) than the other traders in commodities like food, clothing, electronics, etc. If a patient requires medication, and the doctor prescribes or promotes a particular brand of the required medication only because the doctor happens to get a 'commission' or 'rebate' from the medicine manufacturer, at no substantial cost to the patient, there is absolutely no harm.
But say a patient comes to a doctor with a minor cut or bruise, and the doctor prescribes that the patient undergo absolutely unnecessary blood tests, or citi-scans, or mri, or xrays, etc. only so that the doctor may fleece the patient, then it would indeed not be considered piety and righteousness on behalf of the believing doctor to do so.
Whatever written of Truth and benefit is only due to Allahs Assistance and Guidance, and whatever of error is only ones. Allah Alone Knows Best and He is the Only Source of Strength.
Your brothers and well wishers in Islam,
Members of Islamhelpline