Thursday, July 9, 2009

Journalists: Too Cozy with Pharma Money?

In HOOKED I quoted journalist Shannon Brownlee and unfavorably contrasted the ethics of physicians who eager lap up drug company gifts, with the ethics of journalists who according to Brownlee, "could never show their faces in the newsroom again" if they engaged in similar behavior. A more jaundiced view of journalism ethics in the face of Pharma money can be found at:

Gary Schwitzer of the University of Minnesota comments on fellowships paid by Pfizer to send journalists, all expenses paid, to conferences on cancer care; and free tours of the Eli Lilly headquarters also paid for by the company. He points out the codes of ethics of major organizations of journalists that prohibit taking such gifts; and he then notes that when he complained about these gifts to the respective organizations (National Press Foundation and Society of Professional Journalists), he received only a ho-hum reply.

(Thanks to our friends at Healthy Skepticism for this tip.)

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