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Commentary |

Physicians and the Investment Industry

Eric J. Topol, MD; David Blumenthal, MD, MPP
JAMA. 2005;293(21):2654-2657. doi:10.1001/jama.293.21.2654.
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Until recently, it was quite uncommon for physicians to have a consulting relationship with the investment community. But the relationship of physicians with financial entities has been radically transformed, with almost 1 of 10 US physicians currently engaged in a formal consultancy with the investment industry.14 Because of investment firms’ interest in ongoing clinical research, the proportion of academic physicians who have relationships with these financial entities appears to be considerably higher. These relationships create opportunities both for useful exchange of information and for potential conflict of interest, particularly in the area of clinical research. In this article, we discuss the scope of the convergence between physicians and investment firms, the issues of conflict of interest, and propose recommendations for institutions and individuals.

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The American Medical Association is accredited by the Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education to provide continuing medical education for physicians. The AMA designates this journal-based CME activity for a maximum of 1 AMA PRA Category 1 CreditTM per course. Physicians should claim only the credit commensurate with the extent of their participation in the activity. Physicians who complete the CME course and score at least 80% correct on the quiz are eligible for AMA PRA Category 1 CreditTM.
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