In Reply:We concur with Wen and McCoy that the influence of industry begins at the earliest stages of medical training. Medical schools are uniquely positioned to educate future doctors about the effects of this influence, and to promote the formation of evidence-based prescribing habits. The American Medical Student Association (AMSA) stance on this issue represents not only a statement of principle, but models behavior that differs from the institutional practices of many medical schools and teaching hospitals. Role modeling by institutions and opinion leaders can have a major impact on the development of professional norms among trainees.1 For this reason, we encourage teaching institutions and physician preceptors not only to implement curricula on physician-industry interactions, but to reflect upon and modify their own behavior to better match the norms they encourage in their students.2,3


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  • 1
    Shrank WH, Reed VA, Jernstendt C. Fostering professionalism in medical education: a call for improved assessment and meaningful incentives. J Gen Intern Med. 2004;19: 88792.
  • 2
    Kenny NP, Mann KV, MacLeod H. Role modeling in physicians' professional formation: reconsidering an essential but untapped educational strategy. Acad Med. 2003;78: 12012.
  • 3
    Wright SM, Kern DE, Kolodner K, Howard DM, Brancati FL. Attributes of excellent attending-physician role models. N Engl J Med. 1998;339: 198693.