Conflicts of Interest: Challenges and Solutions in Business, Law, Medicine, and Public Policy
Don A. Moore, Daylian M. Cain, George Loewenstein, Max H. Bazerman
Cambridge University Press, Apr 18, 2005 - Business & Economics
This collection explores the subject of conflicts of interest. It investigates how to manage conflicts of interest, how they can affect well-meaning professionals, and how they can limit the effectiveness of corporate boards, undermine professional ethics, and corrupt expert opinion. Legal and policy responses are considered, some of which (e.g. disclosure) are shown to backfire and even fail. The results offer a sobering prognosis for professional ethics and for anyone who relies on professionals who have conflicts of interest. The contributors are leading authorities on the subject in the fields of law, medicine, management, public policy, and psychology. The nuances of the problems posed by conflicts of interest will be highlighted for readers in an effort to demonstrate the many ways that structuring incentives can affect decision making and organizations' financial well-being.
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In an uncommonly capitalist economy like our own, doctors operate inside a large medical industry. Drug developers inside a large pharmaceutical company. Doctors prescribe treatment, and sell industrial pharmaceutical brands. One industry prescribes the other industry. It is useful to determined how shared interests are developed between doctors and drug developers. Or how those interests may become a conflict for patients, who are billed for treatment, and again billed for drug as an alternative treatment.
“If the educational contents of drug-company-sponsored seminars are as unbiased and informative as the industry claims; if they are indeed effective in promoting the internal, professional interests that doctors have in developing their own “human capital,” then physicians should be willing to pay for them...They have no need to rely on an external third party to defray them as a gift. This makes it seem more like self-dealing; like an interest of a third party is impinging on the physicians relationship with his patient.” (Page 173).
There are very few checks or balances in this industry relationship to prevent conflicts of interests, since doctors are rewarded financially for sales of prescription drugs. Also, the reason why the physicians are always male is unknown. Or un-described.. Though the content above is relevant, that assumption is sexist. As there is no evidence to support that it is not possible to have a female physician, who is effectively bribed by profits shared with pharmaceutical companies as well! There may be even more doctors who are over looked. Let’s not assume all male physicians can be easily persuaded, and all female physicians can not! That's ridiculous...
lol. You see what I did there.