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Do Financial Relationships Between Physicians and Drug Companies Influence Prescribing Practices?

In a study published in The Oncologist, physicians treating certain cancers who consistently received payments from a cancer drug’s manufacturer were more likely to prescribe that drug over alternative treatments.

Wednesday, February 6, 2019 12:05 am EST
"These findings add to a growing body of work that suggests physicians are more likely to use drugs made by companies that have given them money in the past"

In a study published in The Oncologist, physicians treating certain cancers who consistently received payments from a cancer drug’s manufacturer were more likely to prescribe that drug over alternative treatments.

The study evaluated physician prescribing of orally-administered cancer drugs in 2013 through 2015 for four cancers: prostate cancer (abiraterone, enzalutamide), kidney cancer (axitinib, everolimus, pazopanib, sorafenib, sunitinib), lung cancer (afatinib, erlotinib), and chronic myeloid leukemia (dasatinib, imatinib, nilotinib).

Among the 2,766 physicians in the study, those who received payments for a drug within three consecutive years had increased prescribing of that drug for kidney cancer, chronic myeloid leukemia, and lung cancer, but not for prostate cancer.  

“These findings add to a growing body of work that suggests physicians are more likely to use drugs made by companies that have given them money in the past,” said lead author Dr. Aaron Mitchell, of Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center.

Additional Information

Link to Study: https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/full/10.1634/theoncologist.2018-0423

About Journal 

In a constantly changing field, oncology and hematology professionals must stay at the cutting edge of new diagnostic and therapeutic advances for the benefit of their patients. To that end, The Oncologist® is dedicated to translating the latest research developments into the best multidimensional care for cancer patients. Thus, The Oncologist is committed to helping physicians excel in this ever-expanding environment through the publication of timely reviews, original studies, and commentaries on important developments. We believe that the practice of oncology requires both an understanding of a range of disciplines encompassing basic science related to cancer, translational research, and clinical practice, but also the socioeconomic and psychosocial factors that determine access to care and quality of life and function following cancer treatment.

About Wiley

Wiley is a global leader in research and education. Our online scientific, technical, medical, and scholarly journals, and our digital learning, assessment, certification and student-lifecycle services and solutions help universities, academic societies, businesses, governments and individuals to achieve their academic and professional goals. For more than 200 years, we have delivered consistent performance to our stakeholders. The Company's website can be accessed at www.wiley.com.

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