UConn considers pharma gift ban

The University of Connecticut Health Center may become the next academic medical institution to set limits on drug- and medical device-maker gifts to staff and students. A committee of administrators and students there have drafted a policy on the subject, unveiled during this week's American Medical Student Association's "PharmFree Week" event. The guidelines would not only ban gifts over $100, but also specify that only modest meals would be allowed at educational presentations.

Medical students at the Center say they're taking action because they're concerned about the level of marketing already reaching them, which they feel could have an undue influence on future prescribing patterns. For example, students say they're already being offered gifts like free lunches and stethoscopes when they train at primary care clinics.

If the initiative succeeds, UConn would be one of a growing number of health systems and academic medical centers adopting such policies. Many others, including the Henry Ford Health System, Stanford University, Yale University, the University of Pennsylvania, University of California at Davis and Boston University, already have such policies in place.

To learn more about the proposed ban:
- read this Hartford Courant article

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