Medicina (Buenos Aires)
versión On-line ISSN 1669-9106
CASTRESANA, Leonardo; MEJIA, Raúl y AZNAR, Mireya. The attitude of physicians regarding the promotion strategies of the pharmaceutical industry. Medicina (B. Aires) [online]. 2005, vol.65, n.3, pp. 247-251. ISSN 1669-9106.
Pharmaceutical companies invest large sums of money promoting their products. They use a multifaceted approach to drug promotion, incorporating techniques such as hospital and office detailing by pharmaceutical representatives. Although these practices are commonly used, little has been published about the attitude of physicians concerning their interaction with the pharmaceutical industry. We performed a cross sectional anonymous survey to identify the extent of and attitudes towards the relationship between the physicians and the pharmaceutical industry and its representatives with its impact on the knowledge, attitude and behavior of the physicians. Internists, cardiologists and dermatologists who work in ambulatory settings from private and public hospitals in Buenos Aires city participated in this study, 44% were female, 35% residents, 65% staff physicians, averaging 41 years of age. Of these, 86% receive medical samples frecuently, 39% desk gifts, 19% invitations to congresses and 12% free lunches. Half of the doctors believe that receiving benefits from the pharmaceutical industry has an influence on medical prescription, but only 27% accept this as influential in their own prescriptions. Residents consider, more frequently than others, that these activities affect their decisions, (42% vs. 18% p = 0.007, global 30%). Most of the participants consider appropriate receiving these benefits, although 35% think that they affect the final price of medications. In conclusion, there is a high level of interaction between the pharmaceutical industry and our medical population. Although the latter recognize the influence of these interactions on prescriptions and the elevation of the cost of the final product, they find it appropriate to receive benefits.
Palabras clave : Pharmaceutical industry; Gift giving; Medical samples; Conflict of interest.