In response to the ongoing controversy of industry researchers presenting at scientific conferences such as the American Heart Association’s Scientific Sessions (articles here and here) the Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education (ACCME) today released this statement seeking input from CME providers:
As the national standard bearer, the ACCME accreditation system is designed to ensure that continuing medical education is independent, promotes improvements in physician performance and patient care, and serves the best interests of the public. In March 2009, we clarified our guidelines restricting industry employees’ role in accredited CME in response to questions from accredited providers. This is not a new policy. It is a clarification of our Standards for Commercial Support, which were issued in 2004. The goal of the policy is to support education about scientific advances in an atmosphere that is free of commercial bias.
We recognize this policy addresses complex issues and presents challenges for some accredited organizations. We are engaged in ongoing discussions with them to understand their specific circumstances and to provide support as they develop implementation strategies. We welcome constructive debate and input about this policy and all issues related to managing conflicts of interest in accredited CME. We will keep accredited providers and other stakeholders apprised of the progress of these discussions. The ACCME is committed to setting fair and reasonable standards that support education about scientific research and developments, while ensuring that accredited CME is independent and free of commercial influence.
It is important that your concerns over preventing industry scientists from presenting in scientific presentations are submitted to the ACCME.
To Submit Comments: firstname.lastname@example.org