Physicians and Conflicts of Interest


In medical practice, the most commonly observed conflicts of interest are the ones existing in the relations between professionals and industries linked to health or between the former and health services. These relations are no longer a partnership in search of the best to be offered to patients and tend to take up a commercial role, in a seduction game where, each one, in their own manner, seeks benefits. The purpose of this study is to analyze the existence of these conflicts of interest, in an exploratory and qualitative study, with physician focal groups. The results were grouped in two categories: benefits received by physicians and the justifications provided by them for the establishment of these partnerships. The most common benefits are: percentages over orthoses and prosthetics received by the industry; discounts and credits on rent or condominium fees for exam indications and procedures; rewards offered by the pharmaceutical industry for the indication of their products. Physicians have pointed out as main determinants for ethical missteps that involve conflicts of interest, the character and family formation as well as the lack of denunciations. The fact that efficient and widespread laws for resolution of conflicts of interest do not exist makes it necessary to recognize their existence with mechanisms of management and transparency, perhaps as the only way to avoid negative interference in physician behavior.

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Pimentel, D. , Vieira, M. , Neves, J. , Costa-Neto, M. and Oliveira, L. (2014) Physicians and Conflicts of Interest. International Journal of Clinical Medicine, 5, 956-965. doi: 10.4236/ijcm.2014.516128.

Conflicts of Interest

The authors declare no conflicts of interest.


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