Toward Evidence-Based Conflicts of Interest Training for Physician-Investigators

Journal of Law, Medicine and Ethics 40 (3):500-510 (2012)
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Abstract

In recent years, the government, advocacy organizations, the press, and the public have pressured universities, academic medical centers, and physicianinvestigators to do more to ensure that their financial interests and relationships do not conflict with their duties to conduct high-quality research and protect the safety and welfare of clinical trial participants. A number of factors underlie the increased focus. First, private sector funding of clinical research has grown both in absolute terms and as a proportion of overall funding. In 2008, the pharmaceutical, medical device, and biotechnology industries’ domestic research and development expenditures constituted approximately 60.9% of funding for biomedical research in the United States; the next largest funder, the National Institutes of Health, funded 27.9%. Private industry spent $58.6 billion on research in 2007, up from $40 billion in 2003, an increase of 25% after adjusting for inflation.

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