sexta-feira, 8 de junho de 2007

Conflito de interesse: mais um episódio

A questão do conflito de interesse está cada vez mais presente e, agora com os mecanismos de controle originados pela internet, a verificação de conflito fica muito mais fácil. Pesquisar o nome do pesquisador no google, p.ex, já é uma forma muito fácil de verificar situações como palestras e conferências para a indústria. Abaixo, a descrição da política do Journal Watch, a partir de um caso referente a depressão na gravidez publicada na edição de hoje do The Wall Street Journal.
Research Digest to Ease Access To Author Disclosures By DAVID ARMSTRONGJune 8, 2007 A popular online research digest will make it easier for readers to discover its authors' potential conflicts of interest, after criticism of its handling of a commentary defending the use of antidepressants in pregnancy. The system adopted by the Web site Journal Watch was the latest move to toughen disclosure after a series of cases in which authors' ties to the pharmaceuticals industry weren't disclosed. Journal Watch is owned by the Massachusetts Medical Society, publisher of the New England Journal of Medicine. Under Journal Watch's new system, to be adopted later this month, online readers will be able to click on an author's name and instantly see disclosures about his or her financial ties to drug makers and other sources of support. The site, aimed at doctors, summarizes significant articles on recent medical journals.The change comes after a dust-up over an April 26 article by psychiatrist Claudio N. Soares arguing that despite cautions from regulators and medical societies, considerable data support antidepressant use by pregnant women. Dr. Soares, a professor at McMaster University in Hamilton, Ontario, has been a researcher, consultant or speaker for several antidepressant makers, including Forest Laboratories Inc., GlaxoSmithKline PLC, Wyeth and Eli Lilly & Co. After a query by a reader, information about Dr. Soares's financial relationships was appended to the article on May 31. The article also triggered a rebuke from Adam Urato, a perinatologist at New England Medical Center in Boston, who said the piece minimized dangers posed by some antidepressants and should have noted Dr. Soares's financial relationships. Dr. Soares didn't reply to messages seeking comment.Brown University professor Sandra Carson, editor of the section of Journal Watch that published the piece by Dr. Soares, says the financial disclosures of authors was available on the Web site on April 26. To find the information, a reader was required to go to the main page of the Women's Health section and find a link in small type entitled "More about Journal Watch Women's Health and its board." There, Dr. Soares is listed as an associate editor. The reader then needed to click on another link, "about Dr. Soares," to get to a page listing his biography. On that page, clicking the "disclosure" link produces a list of his financial relationships. Most major medical journals include any financial disclosure information related to authors on the first or last page of the article.Last year, the Journal of the American Medical Association toughened its disclosure demands for writers after a series of cases. In one case, the journal issued a correction on a study it published in February 2006 that reported pregnant women who stopped taking antidepressant medication were more likely to suffer a relapse of depression than those who continued taking medication. The correction said seven of the 13 authors had relationships with drug makers that weren't disclosed.

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