Thursday, July 30, 2009

Senate Hearing on Medical Research and Education

Yesterday, Chairman Herb Kohl (D-WI) chaired a hearing titled "Medical Research and Education: Higher Learning or Higher Earning?" The entire meeting was about the Continuing Medical Education or CME industry. You can watch the video by clicking here (This is from the Senate Special Committee on Aging). This is a long video, but make sure you view the entire clip. Otherwise, you will only hear one side of the story.

What do you think? Will industry-supported CME be a thing of the past? What's going to happen to the medical research and continuing medical education industries? Industry-supported CME has evolved dramatically over the past 10 years and I've seen some significant changes in the way industry-supported CME is developed and delivered. Without free CME, physicians may need to pay thousands of dollars each year for their CME credit. I think most physicians are able to detect potential bias when they listen to a speaker. If they can't, then they should be shielded from journal ads, television ads, and other types of drug promotion. Perhaps marketing and promotional activities need to reduce so that more focus can be spent on evidence-based education.

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