University of Wisconsin requires physicians to divulge outside income
The impact that drug and medical device companies may have on physician treatment decisions is a cause for concern. Creating incentives for physicians to use a certain company’s devices or drugs may jeopardize patient care. As a medical malpractice lawyer in Chicago, I support the University of Wisconsin policy that requires physicians to divulge outside income.
John Fauber reported for the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel (6/20), "At least 11 doctors with the University of Wisconsin School of Medicine and Public Health received more than $50,000 from drug or medical device companies last year, including seven who pulled in six-figure amounts." As a result, the university is requiring "doctors for the first time...to specify how much outside income they receive." According to "the disclosure forms...orthopedic surgeons, who command some of the highest salaries among university and state employees, also got some of the biggest outside income checks, mostly from companies that make medical devices."
Some of these surgeons "were among the most vocal opponents to the university's new disclosure requirements, referring to the more stringent disclosure requirements as voyeuristic." Meanwhile, "critics of these arrangements say they increase the cost of medicine, potentially compromise patient care, and damage the integrity of medical research." Physicians who work "for drug and device companies" have "come under scrutiny in recent years, including congressional investigations, medical journal articles and the media."