, according to results from a study published in .
Hiroaki Saito, MD, of Tottori University in Yonago, Japan, and colleagues retrospectively analyzed 2016-2017 payment data from 78 pharmaceutical companies in regard to 326 oncology guideline authors in Japan. Data collected included clinician demographic information, the amount of payments received, types of payments, and information related to disclosure methods.
The team reviewed oncology guidelines for gastric, breast, hepatocellular, pancreatic, lung, and colorectal cancers. Subsequently, they confirmed whether the amount of payment received was in accordance with each guideline’s policy of conflict of interest (COI) disclosure.
“Because no unified and ready-made database encompassing all the companies was available, we obtained each company’s data individually and organized the data into a unified database,” the researchers wrote.
The researchers found that among 326 guideline authors, 255 (78.2%) received compensation from pharmaceutical companies in 2016, with 25.8% receiving over $10,000. In addition, they reported that only the breast cancer guidelines included the authors’ COI disclosures in a detectable matter.
“Guidelines for lung, colorectal, pancreatic, and hepatocellular carcinomas disclosed the financial relationships between the authors and companies anonymously; and the gastric carcinoma [guidelines] did not have a COI disclosure section,” Dr. Saito and his colleagues wrote.
The researchers acknowledged that a key limitation of the study could be measurement error as the findings were dependent on the accuracy of information entered into the database.
The study was funded by the Medical Governance Research Institute and the Waseda Chronicle. The authors reported financial affiliations with Taiho Pharmaceutical and Medical Network Systems.
SOURCE: Saito H et al. JAMA Netw Open. 2019 Apr 26. doi: 10.1001/jamanetworkopen.2019.2834.