AMIA has had a long-standing interest in promoting a strong ethical framework for its members. In an effort to keep pace with the intrinsic dynamism of the field itself, the code presented is a dynamic document. It will evolve as the field itself evolves. Read the most up-to-date version of the code, a process that hinges on continued input from AMIA members.
Conflict of Interest Policy
In their capacity as leaders of AMIA, all individuals have an obligation to make decisions and conduct affairs of the organization based upon the desire to promote AMIA and its mission. The term “leaders” is used to refer to three groups; (1) AMIA employees (2) members of the board of directors, committee chairs, task force chairs, and general committee members when those particular committees are empowered or charged with making policy or ethics recommendations (also referred to as agents), and (3) committee members (excluding the policy and ethics committees covered above as agents) and elected working group leaders.
COI Disclosure Online Form
Individual should complete this online form using the preferred methods of management that can be found in AMIA's Conflict of Interest Policy. If the suggested management option should not apply, the individual should indicate why with detailed information. The AMIA Executive Committee will confirm their agreement with, or recommend change to, the appropriate management option.
In order to address any potential conflicts of interest proactively, each leader is required to annually complete and submit a disclosure form. The leader also must update the disclosure form if any material changes or additions to the submitted information arise during the course of the year.
CMSS Code for Interactions with Companies
As a member organization of the Council of Medical Specialty Societies (CMSS), AMIA signed the CMSS Code for Interaction with Companies. Although that code allows adjustment in the individual policies of member organizations in response to their own structure, roles, and priorities, AMIA's conflict of interest policy is largely compliant with the CMSS guidelines.
There are a small number of areas in which there are differences between the AMIA Conflict of Interest guidelines and the CMSS Code:
- The CMSS Code asks that Key Society Leaders (defined as the Chair, Chair-Elect, Past-Chair, President/CEO, and Journal Editor-in-Chief) have no Direct Financial Relationship with a Company during their term of service. AMIA has the requirement for the president/CEO but has opted for Disclosure/Recusal for the other Key Society Leaders.
- Section 3.2 of the CMSS Code suggests that Companies that provide support to the Society should not be allowed to influence Society programs or advocacy positions. It is AMIA's practice to allow employees who work for Companies to serve on our Public Policy committee, if appointed by the Board Chair, although we have not appointed such individuals to serve as PPC chair. All PPC members do fill out COI forms annually.
- Section 4.3 of the CMSS Code calls on Societies not to place the names or logos of Companies or products on Society-distributed, non-educational "reminder" items such as tote bags. This is a stricter policy than required by ACCME and has been an important source of sponsorship revenues for AMIA in the past. AMIA's use of these approaches is much reduced in recent years.
Other than these three items, there is no conflict between AMIA COI policies and practices and what the CMSS Code suggests.
For more ethics information, see also the Ethical, Legal and Social Issues Working Group.