Financial support of Continuing Medical Education

Dartmouth Medical School, Hanover, New Hampshire, USA.
JAMA The Journal of the American Medical Association (Impact Factor: 29.98). 04/2008; 299(9):1060-2. DOI: 10.1001/jama.299.9.1060
Source: PubMed
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    ABSTRACT: In recent years, commercial funding for continuing medical education (CME) has dropped significantly. Yet, little has been written about how this might affect CME in oncology, a field in which new drugs and advances emerge at a rapid pace. This study examines the role oncologists and oncology fellows say that CME plays in their ongoing professional development and their attitudes about the potential and realistic impact upon both the dissemination of medical information and the impact on patient care if commercial support were removed from CME. The study is based upon a national survey of 368 oncology clinicians (283 oncologists and 85 oncology fellows). Respondents indicated that CME is an important part of their ongoing professional development. The majority of oncologists (90 %) and oncology fellows (78 %) "agreed" or "strongly agreed" that commercial support may be more necessary for oncology than for other specialties due to the rate at which cancer therapies are introduced. Respondents felt loss of commercial support would impact cost, format, and availability of oncology CME programs. Half of oncologists thought eliminating commercial support for CME would have a negative impact on application of new therapies in oncology. Yet, both oncologists and oncology fellows were reluctant to claim the removal of commercial support would negatively affect the practice of evidence-based medicine, patient outcomes, or patient safety. A possible explanation of this apparent contradiction is found in the social sciences literature.
    Journal of Cancer Education 04/2014; 30(1). DOI:10.1007/s13187-014-0664-4 · 0.88 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: The objectives of this study were to identify and document various medical educational events attended by physicians in Pakistan. A cross-sectional study using a structured questionnaire was undertaken with a representative sample of physicians in four major cities: Bahawalpur and Lahore in Punjab province and Loralai and Quetta in Balochistan province. All the data were analyzed using SPSS version 15. Frequencies and percentages were used to summarize the data, and Chi-squared tests, Fisher Exact tests, and Spearman rho were used whenever appropriate. The main study finding indicated that most of the physicians (i.e. general practitioners (GP), GP/specialists and specialists) had attended industry-sponsored educational events. It was found that 173 (69.2%) of 250 respondents attended 727 educational events during the last 1 year. Of these 727 events, 222 (30.54%) were lectures, 207 (29.47%) were scientific conferences, 112 (15.41%) were drug launching ceremonies, 58 (7.98%) were seminars, 38 (5.23%) were training courses and 29 (3.99%) were discussion forums. Out of 173, most of the doctors attended educational events organized by professional organizations of the medical community and sponsored/co-organized by the pharmaceutical industry (n ¼ 115, 67.3%; p ¼ 0.001). Some of them (n ¼ 27, 15.8%) attended the events which were organized by pharmaceutical companies inde-pendently, without involvement of professional organizations. The pharmaceutical industry was the largest sponsor source for physicians (n ¼ 123, 71.9%) to attend educational events. The type of expenses paid for attending the educational events included meals (n ¼ 162, 94.7%), accommodations (n ¼ 118, 96%; p < 0.001), airfare (n ¼ 96, 56%; p < 0.001), registration fees (n ¼ 96, 56%; p < 0.001), taxi fare (n ¼ 75, 43.9%; p ¼ 0.012), and participation fees (n ¼ 14, 8.2%). Educational events are extensively being used as a promotional tool for phar-maceutical products. The findings of the current study reflect the significant role of the pharmaceutical industry in the organization of doctor-led educational events.
    Journal of Medical Marketing 02/2012; DOI:10.1177/1745790411435373
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    ABSTRACT: IMPORTANCE Medical communication companies (MCCs) are among the most significant health care stakeholders, supported mainly by drug and device companies. How MCCs share or protect physicians' personal data requires greater transparency. OBJECTIVE To explore the financial relationships between MCCs and drug and device companies, to describe the characteristics of the large MCCs, and to explore whether they accurately represent themselves to physicians. DESIGN We combined data from the 2010 grant registries of 14 pharmaceutical and device companies; grouped recipients into categories such as MCCs, academic medical centers, disease-targeted advocacy organizations, and professional associations; and created a master list of 19 272 grants. MAIN OUTCOMES AND MEASURES Determine the distribution of funds from drug and device companies to various entities and assess the characteristics of large MCCs. RESULTS Of the 6493 recipients of more than $657 million grant awards from drug and device companies, 18 of 363 MCCs received 26%, academic medical centers received 21%, and disease-targeted organizations received 15%. For-profit MCCs received 77% of funds (208 of 363). Among the top 5% of MCCs, 14 of 18 were for-profit. All 18 offered continuing medical education: 14 offered live and 17 offered online CME courses. All required physicians to provide personal data. Ten stated that they shared information with unnamed third parties. Eight stated they did not share information, but almost all added exceptions. None required explicit physician consent to their sharing policies. CONCLUSIONS AND RELEVANCE Medical communication companies receive substantial support from drug and device companies. Physicians who interact with MCCs should be aware that all require personal data from the physician and some share these data with unnamed third parties.
    JAMA The Journal of the American Medical Association 12/2013; 310(23):2554-2558. DOI:10.1001/jama.2013.281638 · 29.98 Impact Factor


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