The College of Physicians and Surgeons of Ontario, said to be the largest  medical regulator in Canada, has proposed a policy addressing physicians’ relationships with industry. Among other matters, physicians  would be unable to accept “personal gifts of any value from industry or  industry representatives.” The proposed prohibition is based on “[r]esearch  demonstrat[ing] that accepting gifts or inducements from industry influences and likely undermines a physician’s independent clinical judgment,  even where the physician believes otherwise.” 

The proposal would also bar physicians from requesting or accepting a fee  or equivalent consideration in exchange for “seeing industry representatives in a promotional or similar capacity,” although they could accept  items “that advance disease/treatment education (e.g. patient teaching  aids),” preferably with a company logo only and eschewing any reference  to “specific therapeutic agents, services, or other products.” Physicians  would also be allowed to accept drug samples, as well as modestly valued  meals during product presentations. Additional requirements would  address educational conferences, speaker fees and participation on  industry advisory boards. Comments on the proposal are requested by  May 14, 2014. See National Post, March 30, 2014.