253775 Market Failure in Medical Knowledge: Harming Patients by Systematic Misrepresentation of the Benefits and Risks of New Drugs

Monday, October 31, 2011: 3:30 PM

John D. Abramson, MD , Department of Health Care Policy, Harvard Medical School, Ipswich, MA
Over the past 30 years the funding and locus of control of pharmaceutical research has undergone a transformation. This talk will explore the effect of these changes on health care providers' access to scientific evidence and, most important, the potential risks to patients.

Learning Areas:
Public health or related organizational policy, standards, or other guidelines
Public health or related public policy

Learning Objectives:
1.Describe specific ways in which reporting of the risks and benefits of drugs can be biased, exposing patients to unnecessary harm. 2. Provide specific example of how scientific evidence has been misrepresented and how patients have been harmed. 3. Understand the limitations of “scientific evidence” in the current context of the production and dissemination of medical knowledge, and possible remedies to these problems.

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I do research and teach in health care policy, and because of my direct experience in pharmaceutical litigation.
Any relevant financial relationships? Yes

Name of Organization Clinical/Research Area Type of relationship
Harvard Medical School Internal medicine Expert consultant Plaintiffs’ Attorneys in litigation involving the pharmaceutical industry. Consultant Wells Fargo Insurance Services

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.