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Greece’s doctors react to limitation of scientific events sponsored by pharmaceutical companies

Doctors in Greece reacted to a decision by the National Drug Organization (EOF) that limits the number of congresses funded by pharmaceutical companies. A circular issued by EOF limits the number of scientific congresses and events sponsored by pharmaceutical companies down to 48 per year.

The controversial circular states that the organization or financing of conferences or seminars by pharmaceutical companies (for topics falling under the responsibility of EOF) is not allowed without the prior approval by the EOF. The number of scientific events sponsored by pharmaceutical companies is limited to 48 per year.”

In a statement, the powerful Doctors’ Association of Athens calls on the health ministry to intervene and reverse the decision.

Stressing that the state does not provide financial support to scientific events where doctors update their knowledge and actively involve in lifelong learning, the statement underlines that “it is inconceivable to put such barriers.”

furthermore the DAA recalls that it is a common practice around the world that scientific conferences, workshops, congresses etc are being sponsored by pharmaceutical and other companies of the sector.

A doctor working at a public hospital was telling me a couple of years ago, how important were these scientific events for the doctors’ education. “We only get a tiny allowance for scientific books which are very expensive” he had told me. the allowance would not cover the expenses, he said.

PS I do not know whether this decision has to do with the general government trend to take control of  the direct or indirect advertisement in the public and the private sector.

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