Monday, February 9, 2009

The Academy of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology Disgraces Itself

The American Academy of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology (AAAAI) has cancelled plans to hold its 2015 meeting in Boston because of a new Massachusetts law imposing tighter regulations on medical industry marketing.

Apparently the sticking point was the law's requirement that CME activities must meet standards set by the Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education (ACCME) or an equivalent body. This requirement would prevent the AAAAI from offering CME credits for poster and abstract sessions sponsored by industry.

Anyone who has attended a CME conference knows that industry poster sessions are marketing activities, not continuing medical education. This doesn't mean that poster sessions should not occur, but that they should be recognized for what they are. Marketing is a legitimate activity. So is CME. But they're not the same.

I hope the AAAAI experiences a backlash from its membership. Given the crescendo of publicity about the corruption of CME and, alas, research, by industry, backlash is likely.

Shame on the Academy!

[See here and here for further information about the AAAAI cancellation.]

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