Study: Academic medical centers have easier time with conflict-of-interest policies

Sometimes, when a healthcare institution rolls out a conflict of interest policy, it creates a hue and cry from various parties who feel that patients or staff members will be unfairly burdened in some manner. However, it seems that even when they adopt strict conflict-of-interest policies, academic medical centers see little loss of faculty members and staff in response, according to a new study appearing in the Journal of the American Medical Association. The study, which notes that roughly 25 medical centers have instituted bans on gifts and other inducements from drug and medical-device companies, also notes that the bans created little turnover.

Such policies typically ban acceptance of travel reimbursement and food, disallow ghostwriting of articles and phony consulting contracts and limit drug sample distribution. In some cases, limits on sample distribution has raised objections from those who say that the poor can't get drugs if samples aren't available, but most of these strictures haven't caused much conflict, the authors noted.

To learn more about this study:
- read this Modern Healthcare article

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