Conflict Of Interest Policies In U.S. Medical Schools Show Disparity
According to a study in the February 13 issue of JAMA, a minority of U.S. Medical schools have adopted official policies regarding conflicts of financial interests for the institutions. In contrast, at least two-thirds have adopted policies regarding the financial interests of institutional officials.
Relationships exist between academic institutions and industry when academic institutions or their senior officials have a financial interest with or a finanicial interest in a public or private company. The authors state: “Institutional conflicts of interest (ICOI) occur when these financial interests affect or reasonably appear to affect institutional processes. These potential conflicts are a matter of concern because they severely compromise the integrity of the institution and the public’s confidence in that integrity.” Additionally, these conflicts may affect research results. As a results, the Association of American Universities (AAU) and the Association of American Medical Colleges (AAMC) have stated policies regarding ICOI which they endorse.