Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Really, No Gift Is Too Small...

..At least not when it comes to currying favor among doctors.

A recent article in the Archives of Internal Medicine shows that even small gifts like a coffee mug or pen inscribed with a drug's name can influence the opinion of doctors.

The study shows that students from a medical school where such gifts are allowed had a more favorable attitude toward a cholesterol-lowering drug than did students from a school where such gifts were banned.

(The schools were the University of Pennsylvania, which bans most gifts, samples and meals from drug companies, and the University of Miami, which allows them. The drugs were Lipitor and Zocor.)

The study is important because many doctors (like many of us) believe our judgment can't be bought -- at least not so cheaply.

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