May 6th, 2011
News Reports Scrutinize Heart Rhythm Society’s Ties To Industry
A series of investigative reports published on ProPublica analyzes the financial relationships between medical societies and drug and device companies. The Heart Rhythm Society, whose annual meeting is now taking place in San Francisco, comes in for especially close scrutiny. The series begins:
“From the time they arrived to the moment they laid their heads on hotel pillows, the thousands of cardiologists attending this week’s Heart Rhythm Society conference have been bombarded with pitches for drugs and medical devices.”
Other medical societies, including the ACC and the American Society of Hypertension, are also discussed in the series. In one item, Douglas Packer and Bruce Wilkoff, the HRS president and president-elect, answer in some detail numerous questions asked by the authors of the series. Another item raises questions about whether industry has exerted undue influence on information sheets for arrhythmia patients published on the HRS website.