Medical journal editors condemn ghostwriting

hods," they wrote."

The editors continue: "We had no problem with this manuscript's having been commissioned by a pharmaceutical manufacturer or that someone from the medical education company had performed a review of the evidence and written the draft manuscript. There were two substantial problems, though. First, the contribution of the initial manuscript's original author(s) was not recognized by co-authorship and taking direct responsibility for the work. Second, the financial relationship between that author and the pharmaceutical company was not acknowledged.

"It is important to mention that the author of the manuscript submitted to JGIM was not offered money in return for 'authoring' this manuscript. The medical education company preyed upon academicians' general need to 'publish or perish.'

"Not all interactions between the private sector and academia are necessarily unethical or biased. By encouraging appropriate management of acute and chronic conditions, pharmaceutical manufacturers can benefit to the degree that use of their products is encouraged by evidence-based guidelines established by independent bodies.

"This is not a new problem and will likely be with us as long as unscrupulous corporate officers care more about profits than the truth and don't realize the adverse effects on their profits that will result from an erosion of public trust," concluded Drs. Tierney and Gerrity.


Contact: Cindy Fox Aisen
Indiana University

Page: 1 2

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