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Conflicts of Interest in CME

October 08, 2009

Conflicts of Interest in CME

Today we are going to talk about One of the most hotly contested items in CME today, which is conflicts of interest in CME In our review of the literature over the past several years, we have found that commercial support isn’t necessarily the key issue, but rather ethics is the key issue where people made bad choices that have caused mistakes and problems in CME. A couple of things related that are coming down the pipe- one relates to the IOM (Institute of Medicine) report recommended elimination of CME commercial support funding. We are seeing that the recommendation for a two year discussion on where funding should come from and how we should fund a good quality CME for the future. That recommendation is taken up partly by the Council of Medical Specialty Societies, or CMSS.

CMSS Recommendation

The Council of Medical Specialty Societies, or CMSS, is the joint committee for CME taking up that discussion over several months as well as into the next couple of years. They will be pulling together stakeholders to discuss how to fund CME appropriately and what to do with the hot topic of commercial support. We saw declines in commercial support in 2008 of about 16%, and we are projecting some declines again in 2009 and 2010 at about the same levels. We do know that in our research with pharmaceutical organizations, as well as State and Federal Government agencies, that there is still a great need for CME and in many cases pharmaceutical organizations are the best organizations to fund CME in specific therapeutic areas, based on the fact that they have done research there and they are creating drugs which affect the patients in those areas. In many ways, who better to fund medical education than the organizations creating drugs to improve patient health? If you would like more information about the conjoint committee, the IOM Report or any other questions about CME, feel free to contact us here