The Ministry of Public Health (Ministerio de Salud Pública – MSP) together with the Medical College (Colegio Médico), the Medical Union (Sindicato Médico) and the Medical Federation of the Interior (Federación Médica del Interior – FEMI) are promoting actions to avoid or detect cases of conflict of interests between health professionals and companies in pharmaceutical laboratories.
The Minister of Health, Jorge Basso, explained that ‘the relationship between pharmaceutical laboratories and the medical corps of each country always runs the risk of falling into the so-called conjunction of interests, which can be avoided with transparent management of information’. He stressed that it is a common practice for the pharmaceutical industry to allocate part of its costs to advertising.
In this sense, Basso emphasized the importance of promoting transparency, although ‘actually there are not many things that can be done to publicize the fact that the firm spends a good part of their money to a group of specialists to prescribe their trademark’.
Finally, he indicated that the ‘sound judgment’ of a medical professional is always above commercial interests, but considered necessary for the information to be known: ‘It is healthy for democracy that things that seem part of the everyday life are clearly expressed and everyone knows about them’.