Conflict Of Interest In Psychiatry

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Conflict of Interest in Psychiatry
In her book, Psychiatry and the Business of Madness: An Ethical and Epistemological Accounting, Bonnie Burstow attempts to provide a methodical and systematic deconstruction of the field of psychiatry and the base it lays itself on. She heavily questions the psychiatric principles and critiques what a mental disease is. Burstow also questions and critiques the biomedical model to reveal how many psychiatric treatments are merely a form of social control. Subsequently, Burstow appeals for the elimination of psychiatry, emphasizing that the, "regime as a whole is epistemologically flawed and ethically unacceptable" (Burstow, 2015, pp. 227). In chapter seven of her book, Burstow analyses and scrutinizes the functions
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Most of the time, psychiatric clinical research constitutes patients who are quite vulnerable and helpless due to their incapability to give consent. These patients are ethically and morally acceptable if there are no other ways of addressing the clinical questions made available to them. Conflict of interest is quite prevalent among psychiatric clinical trials, where there is a greater possibility of reporting a drug to be better than a placebo. In a study by Frances (2007), where 397 clinical trials were taken a closer look at, 239 trials had received funding from the pharmaceutical company that had manufactured the drug being studied, or other interested parties. Another 187 studies had included one or more authors with financial conflict of interest (Frances, 2007). Furthermore, 162 studies that were randomized, double-blind, with a placebo control showed that a reported conflict of interest led to results that were 4.9 times more likely to be positive. The results show that industry-funded research is more likely to produce conclusions that favour a drug sponsored by the manufacturer, even if the yielded results had no correlation to the conclusions being made. An example of this is, studies that look at clinical trials that examine specific clinical specialties and problems, show outcomes that favour the industry,…show more content…
This results in academic opinion leaders delivering company-approved presentations, marketing their medications to colleagues and medical peers, 'in the guise of medical education ' (Freedman et al., 2009). The irony is that those in the field of psychiatry, who contribute to conflict of interest may not be in a position to perceive it as such. Various policies have been established during the past 60 years that exist to protect study participants. These policies have been put in place especially for those who are mentally ill or diseased. But is this
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