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May 24/31, 2000

Gifts to Physicians From the Pharmaceutical Industry—Reply

Author Affiliations

Phil B.FontanarosaMD, Deputy EditorIndividualAuthorStephen J.LurieMD, PhD, Contributing EditorIndividualAuthor

JAMA. 2000;283(20):2655-2658. doi:10.1001/jama.283.20.2653

In Reply: Although the business interests of the pharmaceutical industry always have potentially conflicted with the best interests of patients, it is only since the 1980s that these conflicts threatened to adversely affect patient care. In addition to promoting name recognition and access to prescribers, the pharmaceutical industry has created incentives that, in themselves, alter prescribing behaviors.

Dr Wazana1 pointed out that not only do these practices work, but they are so effective that many physicians are not even aware of the influence of these techniques on their own behavior.