Conflict of interest regarding clinical physicians' relationship with pharmaceutical industry and medical education
Seishin shinkeigaku zasshi = Psychiatria et neurologia Japonica 2010; 112(11): 1136-45
The relationship between clinical physicians and the pharmaceutical industry is becoming an important social issue. Many lawsuits against drug companies in the area of psychiatric medicine have been heavily covered by the mass media in the U.S., and the injustices of drug companies and clinical physicians have been revealed in court. Although there are few such large social issues in Japan, the relationship between clinical physicians and the pharmaceutical industry in Japan appears inappropriate. A study on the relationship between Japanese clinical physicians and the pharmaceutical industry revealed that many physicians received "gifts" from pharmaceutical companies. This is one form of evidence for the inappropriate relationship between Japanese physicians and pharmaceutical industries. Recently, many recommendations to realize an appropriate relationship between physicians and the pharmaceutical industry have been published in the U.S. However, discussion concerning the relationship between clinical physicians and pharmaceutical companies in Japan is not active. We have received a lot of financial support for continuing medical education from pharmaceutical industries. Without such support, we may not be able to maintain the same level of medical education. Understanding such present conditions, we need to discuss what is an appropriate relationship between clinical physicians and the pharmaceutical industry.
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