November 14th, 2012
D.C. councilman warns of drug companies' ties with doctors
By Alan Blinder
A D.C. lawmaker said Tuesday that the city’s children could be at risk because of close ties between psychiatrists and drug companies, and he said he is likely to seek a strengthening of the District law that requires the manufacturers to disclose their contacts with doctors.
“We can’t be casual about the prescribing of these drugs to young people. We have to be very careful,” at-large Councilman David Catania said. “We can do this better.”
A D.C. Department of Health and George Washington University report found that of the 172 physicians in the District who received at least $1,000 in gifts from leading antipsychotic manufacturers last year, 26 were psychiatrists.
Of them, only seven accepted Medicaid, though they received 66 percent of the gifts to psychiatrists. The physicians’ names weren’t disclosed under District law.