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July 18, 2001

The Pharmaceutical Industry and Continuing Education—Reply

Author Affiliations

Copyright 2001 American Medical Association. All Rights Reserved. Applicable FARS/DFARS Restrictions Apply to Government Use.2001

JAMA. 2001;286(3):302-304. doi:10.1001/jama.286.3.302

In Reply: I admire Dr Dermksian's confidence in the "inherent intelligence" and "rigorous scientific and clinical training," which he believes allow practitioners to "make appropriate judgments of industry-supported CME." Would that it were true, but experienced medical educators know that most busy clinicians do not have the time or the training to evaluate the research literature for themselves and must depend on the opinions of unbiased experts. Neither CME speakers paid by the drug companies nor the sales representatives who work for the companies can be considered unbiased. If their presentations did not put the company's products in a favorable light, why would companies invest billions of dollars in activities that did not serve their commercial interests?

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