Personal sacrifices, rationalization may play role for physicians who accept gifts from industry

September 14, 2010

Sunita Sah, M.B.Ch.B., B.Sc., M.B.A., M.S., and George Loewenstein, Ph.D., of Carnegie Mellon University, Pittsburgh, conducted a study to determine whether reminding resident physicians of the sacrifices made to obtain training, as well as suggesting this as a potential rationalization, increases self-stated willingness to accept gifts from industry.

In a study that included a survey of 301 U.S. resident physicians, the researchers found that "reminding physicians of sacrifices made in obtaining their education resulted in gifts being evaluated as more acceptable: 21.7 percent (13/60) in the control group vs. 47.5 percent (57/120) in the sacrifice reminders group. Although most residents disagreed with the suggested rationalization, exposure to it further increased the perceived acceptability of gifts to 60.3 percent (73/121) in that group."
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(JAMA. 2010;304[11]:1204-1211. Available pre-embargo to the media at www.jamamedia.org)

The JAMA Network Journals

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