Yale medical practice sets new conflicts rules

Medicine's ongoing quest to reclaim the moral high ground continues. Yale Medical Group, which is affiliated with Yale University's medical school, has adopted a new conflicts-of-interest policy to regulate relationships between its doctor-academics and industry, Pharmalot reports. The new policy comes on the heels of a similar move at Harvard Medical School, and after a handful of other academic medical centers have reviewed their own rules.

Yale Medical's new regulations attempt to tread a fine line. They're designed to fend off accusations that industry money and relationships unduly influence its doctors without cutting pharma out of the equation completely. As Pharmalot points out, drug sales reps appear to bear the brunt of the rules. They'll be allowed to visit only by invitation and with an appointment. Companies can still sponsor CME programs and can provide meals during CME events, too.

"[T]he landscape has changed," CEO David Leffell tells Pharmalot in explaining the new policy. And indeed it has--over the past couple of years, congressional investigators have publicized undisclosed financial ties between academia and industry; medical schools and other institutions have reviewed their relationships with drugmakers; and the role of industry money in research and medical practice has taken center stage. "Our view is that we continue to respect the role the pharmaceutical industry plays in contributing to and investing in the health of people," Leffell explains.

- read the Pharmalot post