Monday July 26, 2010
MDs at the Root of Big Pharma's Influence
Big Pharma's influence on the practice of medicine is pervasive. From med school to retirement, pharmaceutical companies nurture relationships with health professionals. What strikes me is how inured some of my colleagues are to the presence of drug companies in their professional lives.
A new study published in the Archives of Surgery proves my point. According to a survey by Korenstein and colleagues, more than 70% of respondents said they see nothing inappropriate about attending lunches sponsored by pharma. Twenty-five percent said they have no problems accepting large gifts from industry representatives.
MDs will continue to be part of the problem until they realize that gifts from Pharma can and do influence their clinical decision making. There's no such thing as a free lunch.