AMSA Pharm-free Scorecard 2010
C Edward Via Virginia College of Osteopathic Medicine
City: Blacksburg State: VA
Commentary:

 This institution supplied AMSA with a newly approved conflict of interest policy after the submission deadline had passed. This school's policy is fairly robust in trying to manage conflict of interest amongst faculty members by not allowing them to receive gifts greater than $40, engage in long-term consulting or speaking relationships with industry, limiting industry influence on on-site and off-site medical education as well as scholarships, fellowships, and support for trainees through a centralized donation office. However, the policy could be strengthened by providing language regarding purchasing and formularies as well as curriculum. To further improve the policy, disclosure could be made public rather than through an internal approval process, industry sales representatives could be further restricted from interacting with faculty on campus, and faculty involvement in speakers' bureaus could be further limited. Their grade went from a D to a C.  

 

* Please note that an evaluation of Edward Via Virginia's policies was performed after the release of the 2011-12 Scorecard.  The changes are noted below.  These changes are unofficial, as they were not performed by our standard double-blinded process.  The policies will be reviewed again by AMSA's typical processes in the fall of 2012.  

 

Updates:  

This institution did not provide any new or additional for the 2012-13.

This institution's evaluation was last updated: 7/2/2012



Gifts & Meals 2 Section 2.4 (Relationships of employees with external entities) states that medical vendor representatives (MVRs) are prohibited from distributing gifts or other inducements. In terms of meals, it states in the policy they are not allowed to bring meals to events related to the product, device or company only - a stronger policy would not allow for any meals to be allowed on campus. The policy states that nominal gifts less than $40.00 are allowed.
Consulting relationships 3 Section 3 (Examples of Potential Conflict) and Section 4 (Disclosure and Management) lists consulting relationships under Category II that require disclosure as well as review and approval of oversight procedures. A formal Conflict of Interest Disclosure of Information, Conflict of Interest Assurance of Compliance, and if requested, a Memorandum of Understanding must be completed with approvals required from the Associate Dean and Dean.
Industry-funded speaking relationships 2 Section 2.7 (Industry Supported Educational Lectures) - All financial support must be reported to and fully disclosed by the meeting sponsor. Speakers must have editorial discretion over lecture content and materials. Content must be objective and reflect individual views of the speaker and not the views of the affiliated teaching hospitals. Content must not include any logos or branding. Speaker relationships must not exceed 3 years and must not interfere with employment. Full time contracted faculty must have approval in advance from the Dean.
Disclosure 2 Section 4 (Disclosure and Management) - The policy states that for Category II items (in which the faculty member has a direct conflict of interest with a commercial entity) they are required to fill out forms detailing their relationship and gather approval from their Associate Dean and Dean. The forms must be resubmitted each year with new approvals in order for the relationship with the commercial entity to continue. There is no language regarding disclosure to patients or any public disclosure requirements.
Pharmaceutical samples 2 Faculty Handbook Section on Samples - Faculty members are allowed to accept samples if they are for medical outreach and other philanthropic causes only but cannot use them in their office. There is no centralized location through which the samples go through as detailed in the policy nor is there language about brand name versus generic samples.
Purchasing & Formularies 1 There is no language regarding P&T in this school's policy.
Industry Sales Representatives 2 Section 2.4 (Relationships of Employees with External Entitites) - Faculty are allowed to meet with Medical Vendor Representatives by advance appointment without prior approval by any supervisors. There is no language restricting where the representatives can meet faculty but only that the material be informational rather than promotional.
On-campus Education 3 Section 2.6 (Education) - The policy places strict restrictions on industry influence on continuing medical education with funds from industry collected at a centralized office. The structure of the CME will in no way be tied to the industry funding the program, giving the medical school full control of the content with final approval from the Dean. Additionally, funding for industry sponsored programs will be made transparent to the participants in all announcements and literature.
Attendance at Industry-Sponsored Lectures & Meetings Off-Campus 3 Faculty Handbook (Section on Travel) - Faculty who attend off-site lectures will only have their travel expenses reimbursed and must not accept gifts or compensation as a condition to participate nor any gifts that relate to the content. A stronger policy would have an approval process in place for off-site education as well as no financial support by industry for faculty to attend these events.
Industry Support for Scholarships & Funds for Trainees 3 Section 2.6 (Industry Support for Scholarships, Fellowships, and Other Support for Trainees) - The medical school allows for industry contributions for fellowships, scholarships and other support for trainees as long it is given through the administration directly or via a foundation. The recipients will be chosen by the school and the funds managed by the school as well.
Medical school curriculum 1 he policy does not include any language regarding a curriculum or training program on conflict of interest.
Do the policies specify an oversight mechanism? Yes Section 4.3 (Management of Potential Conflict) - The Dean is responsible for putting together a Committee on Conflict of Interest to oversee the submission and approval of Assurance of Compliance Forms. If a violation is found, then either the Associate Dean or an external monitor will undertake the steps necessary to rectify the situation.
Are there explicit sanctions for noncompliance? Yes Section 4.3 (Management of Potential Conflict) - The Committee has the authority to disallow the conflict if a violation is found.
What the results mean...
3Model policy
2Good progress toward model policy
1No policy, or policy unlikely to have a substantial effect on behavior
0Did not report
N/APolicy not relevant to this institution (e.g., does not make purchasing decisions)