Intended for healthcare professionals

Letters Competing interests

Any affiliation can lead to bias

BMJ 2008; 337 doi: (Published 11 August 2008) Cite this as: BMJ 2008;337:a1256
  1. Tammy L Boyce, research fellow, public health1,
  2. Bob Ward, director, public policy2
  1. 1King’s Fund, London W1G 0AN
  2. 2Risk Management Solutions, London EC3R 8NB
  1. t.boyce{at}

    Lenzer and Brownlee rightly draw attention to the problem of undeclared commercial interests that conflict with the public interest and influence media reporting of medical advances, but there is a danger that their diagnosis and proposed solution ignore the underlying causes.1

    Any affiliation, not just a link to a commercial enterprise, can lead to bias, and almost everybody has some sort of affiliation, …

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