Section: CET Videos

Gifts, Goodies, and Guilt: Doctors and the Pharmaceutical Industry

Becoming a Physician series, April 5, 2006

© University of Southern California

More Info: Becoming a Physician speaker series

Event description: by Joshua Hornstein

Physicians and the pharmaceutical industry both share a common goal of advancing medical knowledge and treatments. This natural alliance has at times produced significant scientific and therapeutic breakthroughs. However, a darker side of this relationship involving undue commercial influence and conflicts of interest has developed under the current strains of managed care and market incentives.

Since the 1990s, numerous professional organizations such as the American Medical Association and the American College of Physicians have created guidelines to address the ethical issues between the medical profession and the pharmaceutical companies . However, recent developments in the law and new studies in the social sciences have cast doubt on the moral adequacy of these earlier codes. Most concerning, many physicians believe they are immune from commercial influence despite recent medical evidence which documents irrational and unduly medical decisions. To safeguard the historical professional commitments to patient primacy, more rigorous guidelines have recently been suggested to limit the relation between doctors and drug companies.

To further look at this highly topical and complex moral issue, join us on Wednesday, April 5, from 5-7 pm at Taper Hall of Humanities at the University of Southern California where we will be joined by three highly acclaimed experts who will discuss: "Gifts, Goodies, and Guilt: Doctors and the Pharmaceutical Industry."

Admission is free and all faculty and students are welcome. Please encourage your students to attend this student-run and student-organized program.