We teach medical students, residents and fellows evidence-based medicine to lay the groundwork for rational prescribing and good clinical judgment. But should we stop our rheumatology fellows from interacting with pharmaceutical companies as part of this foundation?
Explore this issueApril 2017
It is not surprising that pharmaceutical companies can influence physician prescribing through gifts. At least, it should not be: We know that pharmaceutical companies spend millions of dollars each year on physicians and that gifts to providers can influence prescribing.1 The fact that companies continue to spend money on physicians supports this theory as well. Studies show, however, that we physicians are skeptical about the impact of receiving gifts and other incentives on our prescribing practices.2
Whatever our attitudes toward physician relationships with pharmaceutical companies, as educators, we must carefully monitor our fellows’—as well as students’ and residents’—training. Their education should not be driven by the agenda of pharmaceutical companies, nor should our lectures follow canned slide decks. But what does this mean in practice?| | | Next → | Single Page