ACADEMIC EMERGENCY MEDICINE 2011; 18:977–980 © 2011 by the Society for Academic Emergency Medicine
Objectives: This study was a review of the scientific abstracts presented at a national conference for the required conflict of interest (COI) disclosure both before the meeting and during presentation.
Methods: All presenters were given specific instructions regarding COI reporting at the time of abstract acceptance. All poster presentations were required to have a COI statement. Three physicians using standardized data abstraction forms reviewed abstracts accepted for poster presentation at the 2010 annual meeting of the Society for Academic Emergency Medicine (SAEM). Posters were reviewed for the presence of a required COI disclosure statement, and these results were compared to the mandatory continuing medical education (CME) disclosure form that was sent by the presenters to the SAEM central office before the meeting.
Results: There were 412 posters accepted for presentation at the 2010 SAEM annual meeting. The reviewers observed 382 (93%) of the total posters for the conference. Sixty-nine abstracts (18%) reported a COI. Only 26 (38%) of these were actually reported to the SAEM office on the CME disclosure form before the meeting; the remaining 62% were found on the poster alone. COI that were reported on the CME disclosure form were found on the poster 46% of the time. The remaining posters without a COI actually displayed the mandatory disclosure statement only 14% of the time.
Conclusions: This review of presentations at a national meeting found a lack of compliance with printed guidelines for COI disclosure during scientific presentation. Efforts to increase uniformity and clarity may result in increased compliance.