Deny prescribing privileges to doctors who are paid to tout drugs
LETTER — Posted May 2, 2005
Regarding "Drug company gifts not proper, whether sterling silver or stethoscope" (Letters, March 28): The drug companies pay lots of money to physician speakers, along with gourmet dinners in expensive restaurants for the attendees, to pitch their products. Too many of these speakers have no reputable clinical or research background and use company-provided slides for presentation.
Physicians are exclusively privileged to choose between available drugs and medical devices. Accepting money from competing product makers is deceit. Medicare and state licensure boards can stop this by denying prescription privileges to industry-affiliated physicians except for bona fide research work.
Mohinder Partap, MD, St. Louis
Note: This item originally appeared at http://www.ama-assn.org/amednews/2005/05/02/edlt0502.htm.