INTRODUCTION

Baylor College of Medicine (BCM) is accredited by the Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education (ACCME) to provide continuing medical education (CME) for physicians. The ACCME and other accrediting bodies for undergraduate and graduate education have established standards to continually enhance the quality of medical education across the continuum.

The ACCME Standards for Commercial SupportSM require everyone in a position to control the content of a CME activity to disclose and manage/resolve conflicts of interest arising from financial relationships with commercial interests. The BCM CME Standing Committee has recommended extending current institutional approaches used to ensure quality across the educational enterprise to meet these requirements.

This disclosure form requests information regarding the existence of any financial relationships that you may have with commercial interests that are relevant to the content of the activity in which you will be involved. (Refer to the ACCME definitions below.) If you do not submit your disclosure information, you will be disqualified from contributing to this activity.

All conflicts of interests identified must be managed/resolved before your involvement with the activity. All persons with identified conflicts of interest may be requested to submit additional information and/or their educational materials for review. The opportunity for content review of materials promotes BCM’s commitment to the highest educational standards, while helping to ensure that BCM activities are free of commercial influence/bias. Thank you for your support in delivering quality continuing medical education.

DEFINITIONS

Commercial Interest. A commercial interest, as defined by the ACCME, is any entity producing, marketing, re-selling, or distributing health care goods or services consumed by, or used on, patients. The ACCME does not consider providers of clinical service directly to patients to be commercial interests.

Financial Relationships/Relevant Financial Relationships. The ACCME requires anyone in control of CME content (see below) to disclose relevant financial relationships to the accredited provider. Individuals must also include in their disclosure the relevant financial relationships of a spouse or partner. The ACCME defines relevant financial relationships as financial relationships in any amount that create a conflict of interest and that occurred in the twelve-month period preceding the time that the individual was asked to assume a role controlling content of the CME activity. The ACCME has not set a minimal dollar amount – any amount, regardless of how small, creates the incentive to maintain or increase the value of the relationship.

Financial relationships are those relationships in which the individual benefits by receiving a salary, a royalty, intellectual property rights, a consulting fee, honoraria, and ownership interest (e.g., stocks, stock options or other ownership interest, excluding diversified mutual funds), or other financial benefit. Financial benefits are usually associated with such roles as employee; manager; independent contractor (including contracted research); consultant; speaker; teacher; advisory committee or review panel member; board member; and any other activities from which remuneration is received or expected.

Conflict of Interest. The ACCME considers financial relationships to create conflicts of interests in CME when individuals have both a financial relationship with a commercial interest and the opportunity to affect the content of CME about the products or services of that commercial interest. The potential for maintaining or increasing the values of the financial relationship with commercial interest creates an incentive to influence the content of the CME – an incentive to insert commercial bias.

Content. Content refers to the subject matter of the entire CME activity, as opposed to the content of a particular individual’s presentation. For the purposes of disclosing financial relationships, activity content is demonstrated in a general summary of the subject matter and/or in a list of the activity topics.

Commercial Bias. Content or format in a CME activity or its related materials that promotes the products or business lines of an ACCME-defined commercial interest.

Validation of Clinical Content. All recommendations involving clinical medicine in a CME activity must be based on evidence that is accepted within the medical profession as adequate justification for their indications and contraindications in the care of patients. All scientific research referred to, reported, or used as support or justification of a patient care recommendation must conform to the generally accepted standards of experimental design, data collection and statistical analysis.

Evidence-Based Content. The clinical content of an activity is evidence-based if it is presented with practice recommendations supported by the best available evidence which has been systematically reviewed and will guide physicians in making choices about specific practice behaviors.