How much clout does a medical doctors’ association have over guidelines on how doctors should conduct themselves before the media or any public forum?
This is the question that has jarred a lot of doctors since new “ethical and professional guidelines” was proposed for physicians. It was publicly aired by The American Medical Association, popularly known as AMA, since 2015. These proposed guidelines intend to stop doctors who speak their minds or rally against medical convention, meaning the line that Big Pharma is espousing since stories of their involvement in major drug and medical trials have been circulating in the industry.
AMA definitely has an agenda of its own. Unfortunately, that agenda is not for the sake and advancement of all U.S.-based medical doctors. Definitely, Big Pharma has already influenced the agency; not it attempts to mete out punishments to doctors who don’t conform to their way of thinking or practice.
This kind of a proposal aims to air a warning to physicians like Dr. Mehmet Oz. He dishes out unconventional wisdom and medical advice that are considered “quack medical advice” by members of the AMA on his own show. In fact, if approved, these guidelines are meant to silence the freedom of speech of not only physicians. Those who listen and heed the advice of unconventional and “alternative medicine” physicians like Dr. Oz are also included.
So to silence those who go against the grain of the Pharma-backed AMA, they intend to silence them, invoking that they are “violating medical ethics in the media”.
Well, how about the ethics of misleading thousands of cancer patients who have to endure the after-effects of cancer-causing chemicals and treatments – and still not be considered “cancer-free”? How about the ethics of not telling parents that the vaccines they allow physicians to inject into their children contain dangerous cultures of bacteria and other toxic chemicals which are not yet totally proven to be harmless to the recipients?
Think of this – why is an organization like AMA have so much say and clout over the majority of medical doctors in the U.S. when their membership represents only 17% of all practicing doctors – and their numbers are dwindling as well? Because they have to make sure that everyone serves and conforms to what Big Pharma is talking about.
Despite a small membership, AMA still retains a powerful lobbying voice on Capitol Hill. It is by spending millions to lobby in Congress for or against drugs and medical procedures that will benefit Big Business. To inform our readers that we’re not making up all these info, we cite a study conducted by the not-for-profit investigative group ProPublica.
The organization reported that a hefty US$6.25 billion was disbursed to 810,716 U.S-based doctors. It was from August 2013 to December 2015 alone by pharmaceuticals and medical device companies. These disbursements were in terms of promotional talks, research and consulting, among other categories.
Even if this was supposed to be “for the sake of science”, that’s an awful lot of assistance to medical doctors that private companies are willing to pay. And payments cover almost all of the states in the U.S! I wonder why did 90.3% of Nevada’s medical doctors receive payment from big pharma and medical device companies in 2014? See the data here: https://www.propublica.org/article/doctors-who-take-company-cash-tend-to-prescribe-more-brand-name-drugs
So, does it make perfect sense to just receive and shut your mouth in this case? Let us know your feedback on this very controversial topic in the comments section below!
Image by Bart Heird / CC BY 2.0