Saturday, July 25, 2009

BLOGSCAN - Reports from the ACRE Meeting

The proceedings at the first meeting of the benignly titled Association of Clinical Researchers and Educators (ACRE) was chronicled on the Carlat Psychiatry Blog here, and on Postscript, the Prescription Project blog here. ACRE, founded by Dr Thomas Stossel (see relevant post here on the sorts of arguments Dr Stossel has made), was founded to defend academics who are paid on the side by drug, biotechnology, and device companies from the complaints of the "pharmascolds." What I found most troubling was that the conference was officially opened by Dr Jeffrey Flier, the Dean of the Harvard medical school, implying a medical school endorsement of this group, and featured presentations by the presidents of the American Association of Clinical Endocrinologists, and the American Society of Hypertension, implying endorsement by these medical societies. But also see the comments by Dr Howard Brody on the Hooked: Ethics, Medicine and Pharma blog that there may be a silver lining to this cloud.


Jim Purdy said...

As a patient, I see very little in modern medicine that inspires confidence. Arrogance by doctors is no substitute for knowledge, and calling patients "non-compliant" is no substitute for listening to their reasons for quitting medications that caused them to have severe side-effects.

Jim Purdy said...

I am amazed that they can be so shameless about their conflicts of interest.

Anonymous said...

I just find this type of meeting impossible to understand against the backdrop of Dr. Jeffery Wang's removal as executive director of UCLA's spine center. (July 22, WSJ Surgeon Faces Probe of Research.) Dr. Wang was involved with five companies, of note Medtronic, and failed to report his financial relationships.

"UCLA has appointed a committee to investigate Dr. Wang's work and determine whether the payments affected his research and "if there are any mitigating actions needed to ensure the integrity of the research results."

It appears UCLA takes this seriously enough to question the validity of the research and the role of conflicts of interest.

Steve Lucas