Journal of the New Zealand Medical Association, 20-May-2005, Vol 118 No 1215
Regarding ‘Is PHARMAC’s sole-supply tendering policy harming the health of New Zealanders?’ editorial
I was surprised to read an editorial written by Pippa MacKay (Chair of the Research Medicines Industry [RMI] Association) that appeared in the 5 May 2005 issue of the New Zealand Medical Journal (http://www.nzma.org.nz/journal/118-1214/1433). The relationship between the pharmaceutical industry and the medical profession is a minefield of conflict of interest. That is why there are codes of conduct around receipt of inducements from companies by doctors, and why editors of reputable journals require information from authors of research papers on whether they have any commercial relationship with organisations that might create conflict of interest.
By accepting the Chair of the RMI as an editorial contributor you are aligning the NZMA’s position with the RMI. I cannot see how this is acceptable, and in my view undermines the credibility of the NZMJ as an independent reputable professional journal.
Dr Ben Gray
NZMJ response: pharmaceutical industry and medical publishing
The relationship between the pharmaceutical industry and medical publishing industry has been an area of conflict, contractions, and self interest (by both groups). The NZMJ in the last 3 years has not published (as far as I am aware) any pharmaceutical industry adverts. Rather, the NZMJ has published a considerable amount on the effects of such advertising and its influence on doctors (see articles in this issue), and there is more to come.
As the author of the above letter correctly states, the relationship between the pharmaceutical industry and medical profession in general is a minefield of conflict of interest. That is why, as he states, there are codes of conduct around receipt of inducements from companies by doctors, and why editors of reputable journals require information from authors of research papers on whether they have any commercial relationship with organisations that might create conflict of interest.
It is clearly stated in Pippa MacKay’s editorial (which is of concern to the letter writer) what her professional role is, and thus it is a clear declaration of potential conflict of interest. If the conflict of interest is unclear, then we have a separate potential conflict of interest statement included; however, in this case, the potential for conflict of interest is so clear, and the statement of the professional role of the author appears quite adequate.
Frank A Frizelle
issue | Search journal |
Archived issues | Classifieds
| Hotline (free ads)
Subscribe | Contribute | Advertise | Contact Us | Copyright | Other Journals