Medical Journals and Conflicts of Interest


  • Robert Steinbrook,

    1. Professor Adjunct of Internal Medicine at Yale School of Medicine in New Haven, CT.
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  • Bernard Lo

    1. President of The Greenwall Foundation in New York, NY, and a Professor Emeritus of Medicine and Director Emeritus of the Program in Medical Ethics at the University of California, San Francisco School of Medicine in San Francisco, CA.
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Physicians and patients rely on medical journals as trusted sources of medical information. Unfortunately, conflicts of interest (this article primarily considers financial conflicts of interest) may undermine the credibility of the medical literature. Improved policies and practices at journals should address the conflicts of interest of authors, reviewers, editors, and journals. Medical journals should manage and eliminate conflicts, not just improve the disclosure of financial relationships.