The report, a summary of which is posted here, is entitled “Innovating for health: Patients, physicians, the pharmaceutical industry and the NHS.”
This report was developed by a work group chaired by Richard Horton (Editor-in-Chief of The Lancet), with representatives from the pharmaceutical industry (including Pfizer and GlaxoSmithKline), academia, and the National Health Service.
The report’s specific recommendation regarding CME was:
“Decoupling the pharmaceutical industry from continuing professional development [this is Great Britain’s term for continuing medical education]. The industry presently pays for about half of all postgraduate medical education. In order to address widespread suspicions that drug promotion is carried out through continuing professional development, the working party recommends weaning postgraduate training off individual pharmaceutical company sponsorship over a time bound period while alternative sources of sustainable funding are organised through for example the royal colleges and the Department of Health.”
Other recommendation included:
· The creation of a program that could provide independent sources of evidence about the effectiveness of different prescription drugs for consumers.
· The creation and adoption of consistent ethical guidelines regarding relationships between doctors and pharmaceutical companies.
· Better collaboration among medical researchers from government, academia, and industry.
I hope that our own ACCME will study this document carefully, and will adopt the same recommendations.
(Hat tip to Kate Peterson and the Prescription Project for alerting me to this item).