Member medical device companies at four of the top industry trade associations worldwide have made a major change in how they support healthcare professionals’ education and training.
In a Jan. 3 joint statement, AdvaMed, APACMed, Mecomed, and MedTech Europe announced a new revision to their codes of ethics in China, Europe, the Middle East and North Africa as well as in the Asia-Pacific region — the removal of direct sponsorships, such as registration fees or expense reimbursements, for healthcare professionals’ attendance at third-party educational events including medical conferences.
The revision was made with the goal of striking a balance between transparent interactions and the need for healthcare professionals to “make independent decisions regarding patient care and treatment,” which could be unintentionally influenced via direct sponsorships, the organizations explained.
The decision to stop providing this kind of support “follows a global trend that began…some time ago, as in the U.S., Australia, and other countries, such as Sweden and Russia,” they said.
Member companies may instead offer educational grants and sponsorship to aid conference organizers, healthcare institutions and/or professional associations in supporting the attendance by professionals. But they will continue to provide training and host educational meetings on the use of complex products.
“With the end of direct sponsorships, we anticipate that companies will have more resources to devote to high-impact HCP training and education opportunities based on companies’ individual educational strategies,” the organizations wrote in the joint statement. — Ana Mulero