Medical Association Issues Statement on Physician Payments for Educational Activities

PHILADELPHIA--()--At its Board of Directors meeting Saturday, the American Association of Clinical Endocrinologists (AACE) endorsed a statement that endocrinologists have a greater responsibility than ever to educate physician colleagues, allied health professionals, and patients on the most up-to-date treatments and guidelines in endocrinology. This is in response to the worsening national epidemic of poorly controlled diabetes and metabolic diseases, the shortage of endocrinologists to treat these conditions, and the rapid expansion of therapeutic innovations that can improve patient outcomes.

Ongoing education in new medications and devices is necessary for their safe and effective use, especially in complex diseases like diabetes. Educational presentations provide the scientific background, the data, and the reasoning to understand new treatment options and make better use of old ones. To make this education accessible it must take place in as many settings as possible, and when sponsored by industry it operates under very strict rules of conduct.

Educators spend many hours preparing their presentations, taking time away from their practices, and traveling in order to participate in educational programs. The legitimate concerns surrounding the abuses of a limited number of physicians should not undermine a fundamental tenet in the practice of medicine – the commitment to the lifelong study and furthering of medical knowledge required to continuously improve patient care.

In May 2009, AACE issued a position statement supporting the ethical collaboration between physicians and industry, noting that “there is no inherent conflict of interest in the working relationship of physicians with industry and such work has resulted in many medical advancements and improved health outcomes.”

In summary:

  • There are too few endocrinologists to treat the worsening epidemic of diabetes and metabolic disease
  • New therapeutic options and guidelines to treat disease require education for safe and effective use
  • Educational programs, including those sponsored by industry, expand the number and types of health professionals who can effectively treat patients with diabetes and metabolic diseases

Resources

American Association of Clinical Endocrinologists and American College of Endocrinology Position Statement on Physician/Industry Relationships - http://www.aace.com/pub/pdf/guidelines/AACEandACEPositionStatementonPhysician.pdf

AACE Board of Directors - http://www.aace.com/org/board.php

About the American Association of Clinical Endocrinologists (AACE)

AACE is a professional medical organization with more than 6,000 members in the United States and 91 other countries. AACE members are physicians who specialize in endocrinology, diabetes, and metabolism. For more information about AACE, visit our Web site at www.aace.com, become a fan on Facebook at www.facebook.com/theaace or follow us on Twitter at www.twitter.com/theaace.

Contacts

American Association of Clinical Endocrinologists
Bryan Campbell, Director of Public & Media Relations, 904-353-7878, ext. 122
bcampbell@aace.com

Sharing

Contacts

American Association of Clinical Endocrinologists
Bryan Campbell, Director of Public & Media Relations, 904-353-7878, ext. 122
bcampbell@aace.com