For those looking for relief from the Obama-Clinton tiffs, I unfortunately have some bad news about the American Psychiatric Association election: Alan Schatzberg beat Donna Norris.
As I covered in a prior post, Norris heads the task force charged with scrutinizing the conflicts of interests of potential DSM-5 committee members. Schatzberg, on the other hand, is a great champion of industry-funded CME. He is on the clinical advisory board of "neuroscienceCME," a new MECC portal owned by CME Outfitters. This company produces a blizzard of CME in different formats, each funded by a single drug company whose product shines more brightly than its competitors in the neuroscienceCME version of reality. Schatzberg is also the editor-in-chief of the new journal, "The International Journal of Sleep and Wakefulness," which is produced by the MECC CECentral, funded entirely by Cephalon, and is a blatant full journal advertisement for Provigil. BUT WAIT, THERE'S MORE! Schatzberg is co-chair, along with star hired gun Charles Nemeroff, of a series of fancy CME meetings traveling across the country on behalf of Bristol-Myers Squibb and Otsuka, makers of Abilify. Entitled Current Concepts and Approaches in Treatment Resistant Depression, these meetings were created in order to highlight recent data showing that Abilify has some mild effectiveness as an augmenter of antidepressants.
But the election news was not all bad. David Fassler was elected as the secretary-treasurer and Dilip Jeste as trustee-at-large. Neither of them accepts industry money and Dr. Jeste made a conscious decision one year ago to sever his industry connections because of his concerns regarding industry influence.