IOM offers pharma-physician conflict-of-interest guidelines

Regulations, laws and policies limiting the way physicians interact with pharmaceutical and medical device companies have been flying thick and fast over the past couple of years. It's no surprise, then, that the Institute of Medicine has weighed in with its own suggested guidelines for physician relationships with the drug industry.

A new IOM report offers 16 recommendations designed to help avoid conflicts between the industry and physicians, biomedical researchers, medical schools, journals, clinical guidelines and institutions.

The guidelines include strengthening existing disclosure policies and adopting conflict-of-interest policies. The IOM also would like to see Congress insist that pharma and devicemakers report payments they made to doctors, researchers, academic medical centers and others on a public website.

Such public disclosure would actually become law if the federal Physicians Payments Sunshine Act passes. That bill would require doctors who get $100 or more from the drug industry over the course of the year to post that information on a public website.

To learn more about the IOM's recommendations:
- read this American Medical News piece

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