Advertisement

The Medical Profession, Industry, and Continuing Medical Education: Finding the Balance That's Right for Patients

      Abstract

      Provision and participation in formal external continuing medical education (CME) is costly. Employer or state support of CME is the exception rather than the rule. The medical industry has supported both providers and consumers of educational activities, leading to concerns of commercial bias. Recent medical industry initiatives in Europe to improve the transparency of the relationship between industry and the profession, including the field of medical education, have had the paradoxical effect of the industry playing an increasingly direct role in the provision of physician education. Funding of medical professional society annual congresses has been directly and indirectly jeopardized. Acknowledging that there are areas of cooperation in the field of education between the medical profession and the medical industry from which both can benefit, we argue that medical education requires an objective approach that the primary fiduciary duty of medical industry companies precludes. Medical professional societies, as not-for-profit organizations whose core mission is the development and promotion of best practice, are best placed to guide and deliver medical education to their members.

      Keywords

      To read this article in full you will need to make a payment

      Purchase one-time access:

      Academic & Personal: 24 hour online accessCorporate R&D Professionals: 24 hour online access
      One-time access price info
      • For academic or personal research use, select 'Academic and Personal'
      • For corporate R&D use, select 'Corporate R&D Professionals'

      Subscribe:

      Subscribe to The American Journal of Medicine
      Already a print subscriber? Claim online access
      Already an online subscriber? Sign in
      Institutional Access: Sign in to ScienceDirect

      References

        • European Commission
        Study concerning the review and mapping of continuous professional development and lifelong learning for health professionals in the EU: Final Report.
        (EAHC/2013/Health/07. Available at:)
        • Union Européenne des Médecins Spécialistes-European Accreditation Council for CME (UEMS-EACCME)
        EACCME criteria for the accreditation of live education events.
        (Available at:)
        www.uems.eu
        Date accessed: December 30, 2018
        • Royal College of Physicians of Ireland
        Industry sponsorship and support.
        (Available at:)
        www.rcpi.ie
        Date: 2012
        Date accessed: December 30, 2018
        • Royal College of Physicians of Ireland
        Guide to approval of events for continuing professional development (CPD).
        (Available at:)
        www.rcpi.ie
        Date accessed: December 30, 2018
        • Royal College of Physicians
        Provide a CPD event.
        (Available at:)
        www.rcplondon.ac.uk
        Date accessed: December 30, 2018
        • Thomson O’Brien M.A.
        • Freemantle N.
        • Oxman A.D.
        • Wolf F.
        • Davis D.A.
        • Herrin J.
        Continuing education meetings and workshops: effects on professional practice and health care outcomes.
        Cochrane Database Syst Rev. 2001; 2CD003030
      1. Swanwick T. Understanding Medical Education: Evidence, Theory and Practice. 2nd ed. John Wiley & Sons Ltd, Chichester, UK2010
        • Quekett J.
        • for M3 Global Research
        Helping European cardiologists keep up to date. PMLiVE 22nd June 2015.
        (Available at:)
      2. Regulation (EC) No 726/2004 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 31 March 2004 laying down Community procedures for the authorisation and supervision of medicinal products for human and veterinary use and establishing a European Medicines Agency (Consolidated version: June 5, 2013).
        (Available at:)
      3. Regulation (EU) 2017/745 of the European Parliament and of the council of 5 April 2017 on medical devices, amending Directive 2001/83/EC, Regulation (EC) No 178/2002 and Regulation (EC) No 1223/2009 and repealing Council Directives 90/385/EEC and 93/42/EEC.
        (Available at:)
        • Allen T.
        • Doodle N.
        • Hofstädter-Thalmann E.
        • et al.
        Framework for industry engagement and quality principles for industry provided medical education in Europe.
        J Eur CME. 2017; 61348876
        • Medtronic
        Medtronic announces new, outcome-based learning program. Press release.
        (Available at:)
        • Spithoff S.
        Industry involvement in continuing medical education: time to say no.
        Can Fam Physician. 2014; 60: 694-696
        • DeMaria A.
        Continuing education, industry, and physicians.
        J Am Coll Cardiol. 2008; 52: 1035-1036
        • ESC Board
        Relations between professional medical associations and the health-care industry, concerning scientific communication and continuing medical education: a Policy Statement from the European Society of Cardiology.
        Eur Heart J. 2012; 33: 666-674
      4. List of guiding principles promoting good governance in the pharmaceutical sector.
        (Available at:)
        • European Federation of Pharmaceutical Industries and Associations (EFPIA) Board
        EFPIA code on the promotion of prescription-only medicines to, and interactions with, healthcare professionals. Consolidated version 2013.
        (Available at)
        www.efpia.eu
        Date accessed: December 30, 2018
        • Medtech Europe
        Code of ethical business practice.
        (Available at)
        www.medtecheurope.org
        Date accessed: December 30, 2018
        • Biomed Alliance
        Code for transparency in the relationship between the pharmaceutical industry and health care professionals.
        (Available at:)
        www.biomedeurope.org
        Date accessed: December 30, 2018
        • International Academy of CPD accreditation
        Consensus Statement for Independence and Funding of Continuing Medical Education (CME)/Continuing Professional Development (CPD).
        (Available at:)