The world of medicine is like a bubble. A lot of people THINK they know what goes on there, but unless you're down in the trenches it's unlikely you do. So here is my semi-anonymous blog, here to tell you what really goes on in the life of a medical resident.

Saturday, January 20, 2007

What Bugs Me Today

As some of you may remember from previous posts, I still haven't really decided on my stance when it comes to pharm reps. Right now I'm leaning in the direction of banning them from my future practice entirely, in the spirit of No Free Lunch. As an emerg doc I won't really be a target of drug reps anyway... although if I continue to keep a foot in family practice by moonlighting in a walk-in clinic or student health centre (which is my intention right now), it will likely become an issue.

But what annoys the crap out of me is the doctors that act all sanctimonious about the fact that they don't meet with drug reps but have no problem accepting drug rep money to fund a golf tournament, a hockey tournament, a CME dinner or other doctor-centered activity. They don't see their stance as hypocritical as they don't see it as 'direct' influence.




Blogger Flea said...

Forgive my skepticism, Couz:

Do you know any docs who forbid detail people in their offices, but accept money for golf tournements?

CME dinners are a dicey one. These really are educational opportunities at which data is, or should be, presented. There should be opportunities for critical thinking on the part of the audience.



wv = cpjooyz (the positive side of cerebral palsy)

6:44 PM

Blogger Couz said...

Hey Flea-- around here, it tends to be hockey tounaments rather than golf. :-)

But yes, I know of a few docs who get high and mighty about how they won't see drug reps, but willingly accept that same source of funding to make their hockey tournaments cheaper or free. We have a few 'mostly meds' hockey tournaments around here where the teams are made up largely of docs.

I agree that CME dinners are dicey. But I'm not sure that I'd trust that the data presented isn't presented in a biased way, making it difficult to critically appraise the source. You'd have to be pretty damn familiar with the literature already to be able to critically assess what is being presented, and I fear that most family docs aren't quite that current.

1:34 PM

Blogger Bohemian Road Nurse... said...

I can't give a valid opinion about this issue because I'm a nurse, not a doctor. But I will say that many of Podunk's patients without health insurance are glad that Podunk's doctors have some sort of relationship with the drug reps because of the free drug samples. Unfortunately, that is the only way that many of our poverty-stricken patients get blood pressure meds, oral diabetic agents, antibiotics, or other stuff.

5:51 PM

Blogger Meg said...

I second what bohemian r.n. says about the free samples. That's huge when people can't afford meds with no/bad rx plans.

8:19 PM


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