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ARTICLE |

Informing Physicians About Promising New Treatments for Severe Disease

Jack R. Harnes, MD
JAMA. 1990;264(15):1947-1948. doi:10.1001/jama.1990.03450150045023.
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To the Editor.—  In their Special Communication, Drs Steinbrook and Lo1 state: "At minimum, we suggest that unconventional communications contain as much detail as a structured abstract in a medical journal."I note that Dr Steinbrook is associated with the Los Angeles Times and I am aware that other major newspapers and television networks have physician or science reporters.I suggest that, at minimum, the media have a responsibility to the public, including physicians, to critique medical news releases. When studies have inadequate numbers of subjects, have no control groups, or follow-up is inadequate, to cite but a few examples that should be apparent to any physicianreporter, the information provided in the news release should be commented on to alert the public of any possible deficiencies in the reports. When appropriate, the criticisms of other physician experts should be quoted in the articles.Some years ago I discussed this

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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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