News Roundup [abridged Versions Appear In The Paper Journal]

Tighter controls are needed to root out bogus patient groups

BMJ 2004; 329 doi: (Published 02 December 2004) Cite this as: BMJ 2004;329:1307
  1. Zosia Kmietowicz
  1. London

    Patient organisations need to be more tightly regulated to protect the public from bogus groups and undue influence from the pharmaceutical industry and other funding bodies, MPs heard last week.

    Setting standards on transparency and accountability would help to distinguish legitimate patient groups from those set up by drug companies to promote awareness of a specific condition and drugs to treat it, said witnesses at the fourth public hearing of the health committee's inquiry into the influence of the pharmaceutical industry.

    There are more than 200 national patient groups in the United Kingdom and many rely on funding …

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