To the Editor.—
Dr Shaughnessy1 pointed out that the continuous exposure of residents in training to medical advertising was likely to influence their prescribing habits. Most physicians complete training unable to evaluate data on new pharmaceuticals critically, data that typically reaches the physician through advertising or via a potentially subjective presentation by a medical service representative—the "detail man." Physicians who are new in practice usually are unprepared to deal with the ethical conflicts that can develop through physician "incentive" programs, which apparently are becoming more imaginative and played at higher stakes.2In September 1988, we initiated a seminar series as part of the developing University of Connecticut primary care residency program. A major part of our first seminar was devoted to pharmaceutical marketing strategies and the interaction of the physician with the medical service representative. Participants included primary care faculty at the University of Connecticut—affiliated Mount Sinai and New
Ferguson RP. Training the Resident to Meet the Detail Men. JAMA. 1989;261(7):992–993. doi:10.1001/jama.1989.03420070042021
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