Sanofi, Merck, etc. have changed their payment terms!

Ken Fenchel from IPMSO shared this news with me today. Take a minute to read this:

If you are not aware, Merck, Sanofi and GSK all changed their payment terms effective 1-1-2021. Instead of 90 days prompt payment they are now giving 60 days prompt payment. I think 99% of all practices pay their invoice using a credit card on the 89th day (as we advise all of our clients). Due to this change the month of March becomes what I call the “witching month.” All of the vaccines ordered in December 2020 had a 90 day due date. This makes them due in March 2021. All vaccines ordered in January 2021 are also due in March 2021!

Practices will have double invoices due in March. On top of that, many practices ordered extra vaccines in December to beat the price increases. I can see cash flow issues happening because of this. The practices that use their credit card to pay the bills will see the effect in April when double payments hit their cards and then the card payment is due. The other possible negative scenario is the credit card limit may be less than the larger vaccine bills. This will cause a decline and the practice will lose the 2% prompt pay discount.

IPMSO notified all of our practices about this in December when we first learned of the term changes. We will be sending out another blast email today.

The vaccine manufacturers did not make a public announcement or notify clients that I am aware of. It is buried in the small print of payment terms. We voiced our concerns to Sanofi and Merck but were told this is a corporate decision.

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It’s incredibly insensitive of these companies to do this in the middle of a pandemic. We realized this was happening at the end of last year. At the very least, you would think they’d come up with a plan to allow for payments due in March 21 to be spread out over 3 months to lessen the cash flow hit to practices. There’s no reason for them to do this other than to provide a short term boost to their quarterly earnings after they took a hit last year when they allowed payments to be delayed.