Building legitimacy by criticising the pharmaceutical industry: a qualitative study among prescribers and local opinion leaders.

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State: Public
Version: Final published version
Serval ID
serval:BIB_E0E7A6559402
Type
Article: article from journal or magazin.
Collection
Publications
Title
Building legitimacy by criticising the pharmaceutical industry: a qualitative study among prescribers and local opinion leaders.
Journal
Swiss Medical Weekly
Author(s)
Pittet A.L., Saraga M., Stiefel F.
ISSN
1424-3997 (Electronic)
ISSN-L
0036-7672
Publication state
Published
Issued date
2015
Peer-reviewed
Oui
Volume
145
Pages
w14240
Language
english
Notes
Publication types: Journal ArticlePublication Status: epublish
Abstract
PRINCIPLES: The literature has described opinion leaders not only as marketing tools of the pharmaceutical industry, but also as educators promoting good clinical practice. This qualitative study addresses the distinction between the opinion-leader-as-marketing-tool and the opinion-leader-as-educator, as it is revealed in the discourses of physicians and experts, focusing on the prescription of antidepressants. We explore the relational dynamic between physicians, opinion leaders and the pharmaceutical industry in an area of French-speaking Switzerland.
METHODS: Qualitative content analysis of 24 semistructured interviews with physicians and local experts in psychopharmacology, complemented by direct observation of educational events led by the experts, which were all sponsored by various pharmaceutical companies.
RESULTS: Both physicians and experts were critical of the pharmaceutical industry and its use of opinion leaders. Local experts, in contrast, were perceived by the physicians as critical of the industry and, therefore, as a legitimate source of information. Local experts did not consider themselves opinion leaders and argued that they remained intellectually independent from the industry. Field observations confirmed that local experts criticised the industry at continuing medical education events.
CONCLUSIONS: Local experts were vocal critics of the industry, which nevertheless sponsor their continuing education. This critical attitude enhanced their credibility in the eyes of the prescribing physicians. We discuss how the experts, despite their critical attitude, might still be beneficial to the industry's interests.
Pubmed
Web of science
Open Access
Yes
Create date
21/12/2015 10:32
Last modification date
20/08/2019 17:05
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