CAMLAW: Complementary and Alternative Medicine Law Blog

Prozac mouse pads and Zoloft coffee mugs

What could be better than pretzels with St. John's Wort and potato chips with Echinacea?

The answer: attending the American Psychiatric Association's annual conference.

With an obvious anti-gift lilt, Wired profiles the conference in Prescribe Me! A Treasure Trove of Psychiatric Drug Swag:

Exhibitors spent tens of thousands of dollars for the chance to give away cool stuff, from a test of the Neuronetics transcranial magnetic stimulator (zapping hands, not heads) to flash-memory devices promoting an Alzheimer's drug.

But the overall loot level is shrinking, so to speak, says Dr. Dan Carlat, who lobbies psychiatrists to reject more expensive gifts from pharmaceutical firms. That's partly a result of complaints, and partly because so much of the merchandise handed out generously in past years -- Prozac mouse pads and gym bags, Zoloft coffee mugs -- promoted drugs with recently expired patents, which are now sold generically.

For every proton there's an anti-proton. It seems someone is taking the companies to task for all the freebies inundating psychiatrists, and hoping to influence the profession to a less prescription-minded state of being.

No one disputes that sometimes medication is the necessary route, but there are always more options than present themselves on the surface, and CAM has many tools to address mental health.

In the meanwhile, whether dealing with complementary or conventional medicine, it's time to end the gimmicks and go back to the essential task of relieving human suffering.
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Law Offices of Michael H. Cohen offers general corporate legal services, litigation consultation, and expertise in health law with a unique focus on holistic, alternative, complementary, and integrative medical therapies. The law firm represents medical doctors, allied health professionals (from psychologists to nurses and dentists) and other clinicians (from chiropractors to naturopathic physicians, massage therapists, and acupuncturists), entrepreneurs, hospitals, and educational organizations, health care institutions, and individuals and corporations.

Michael H. Cohen is Principal in Law Offices of Michael H. Cohen and also President of the Institute for Integrative and Energy Medicine (also known as the Institute for Health, Ethics, Law, Policy & Society), a forum for exploring legal, regulatory, ethical, and health policy issues involved in the judicious integration of complementary and alternative medical therapies (such as acupuncture and traditional oriental medicine, chiropractic, massage therapy, and herbal medicine) and conventional clinical care. The most recent published book by Michael H. Cohen on health care law, regulation, ethics and policy pertaining to complementary, alternative and integrative medicine and related fields is Healing at the Borderland of Medicine and Religion. This book completes the cycle begun in Complementary and Alternative Medicine: Legal Boundaries and Regulatory Perspectives (1998), and continued in Beyond Complementary Medicine: Legal and Ethical Perspectives on Health Care and Human Evolution (2000), and Future Medicine: Ethical Dilemmas, Regulatory Challenges, and Therapeutic Pathways to Health Care and Healing in Human Transformation (2003).

As of 2007, health care and corporate attorney Michael H. Cohen has been admitted to the Bar of California, Massachusetts, New York, and Washington D.C., and to the Bar of England and Wales as a Solicitor (non-practicing). For more information, see the FAQs for the Law Offices of Michael H. Cohen.
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COMPLEMENTARY & ALTERNATIVE MEDICINE LAW BLOG

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