The Wall Street Journal is reporting that the Cleveland Clinic hospital in Weston, FL may have accepted an improper donation from 21st Century Oncology, a company that provides radiation therapy for Cleveland Clinic patients. In 2004, 21st Century gave the Clinic a $500,000 research grant for a research chair. (Perhaps they needed the money -- according to Florida authorities, the hospital lost $17.6 million that year.) The 21st Century donation is a source of conflict because Cleveland Clinic doctors often refer patients to 21st Century. WSJ notes that "such arrangements may be problematic, particularly if they aren't disclosed, because they may give a hospital a financial incentive to use inferior equipment or unproven techniques." The Clinic denies that the donation has any bearing on the referrals it sends to 21st Century.
- for more, see this Wall Street Journal article (sub. req.)