Thursday, July 17, 2008

A point-counterpoint on commerce in medicine

In an earlier post about the CME Thought Police I briefly mentioned Tom Stossel’s piece on the proposed ban on commercial support of CME and larger issues regarding the interface between commerce and medicine. Stossel cites an inquisition against commercial influence in medicine. He appeals to a nuanced and careful analysis of risks and benefits of commerce and believes that guidelines for ethics and policy should be based on careful examination of evidence rather than extreme philosophical bent. To conclude that commercial interests are invariably conflicted with medicine’s professional ideals is simplistic, he said.

Read Stossel’s commentary, then go read a rebuttal by Howard Brody and an accompanying comment thread. I’ll have a thing or two to say about those in a future post.

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