Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Transparency and healthcare

Over at Brain Blogger there is a good article on Transparency in the Pharmaceutical Industry. According to the article there has been increasing pressure on large pharmaceutical companies to disclose "any payments, gifts, food, trips, samples, rebates, or other type of compensation given to physicians". There are (of course) groups of physicians that are opposed to the idea for a variety of reasons, some good and bad.

I suggest reading the article, it is well written and raises many good points.

I think that increased transparency will only be a good thing. I can understand that some doctors will feel uncomfortable with that level of information becoming public knowledge but the solution would be not to accept the money.

A good model might be the financial disclosure requirements that the talking heads on the cable news channels have. If they are recommending a stock for you to buy they have to disclose if they own it. So in the same token, if a doctor is recommending a drug they should have to disclose if they have a financial relationship with the drug manufacturer.

I would like to think that my doctor is looking out for my best interest and not that of a drug company.

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