Conferences and Pharmaceuticals
I am a cardiologist and order one particular brand of stents due to its quality. The company decides to sponsor me for an international conference due to my patronising their product. Whether or not they sponsor I will only order their product as it is a superior brand. Is it wrong for me to accept their offer as in no way is it going to decide or influence my prescribing habit?
There are two aspects of looking at this issue:
The Medical Council has prohibited the doctors from receiving any benefit from any drug/equipment company. You can check this at the MCI web site. So it is clearly against the rules.
When we receive any benefit from any company we are obligating ourselves to pay back to them as they require from us; so we lose our inner freedom at least to an extent. It is good not to be under any such obligation.
So we can prescribe things only according to the quality with total freedom and let us not be involved in anything where there may be some strings attached-as all companies expect some returns from the doctors who receive favours from them.
Underneath all these offers we have to see the lure of money in various disguises. And may our Lord Jesus help us from these subtle temptations which come our way.