ethics

Artificial intelligence (AI) has enormous potential to improve patient outcomes and reduce their variability, making health systems more efficient. But we must take an ethical approach to ensure sustainable implementation and public trust. As leaders in the medical technology sector, we are playing our part in ensuring that our industry develops advanced data-driven technologies in the interest of patients. For us, this is not new: it is in line with our approach to innovation. We begin from an ethical perspective, seeking to improve the lives of people who benefit from the medical technologies we develop. This is a crucial moment in the history of AI in healthcare. Policymakers are looking closely at how to maximise the positive impact of computational science in the age of data while safeguarding privacy and security. We have set out our thinking in two key documents: a paper on Trustworthy Artificial Intelligence in healthcare , in response to the Ethics Guidelines for Trustworthy AI of the European Commission High-Level Expert Group on AI (HLEG AI), and a recently-published MedTech Europe position paper on AI in medtech , addressing the Policy and Investment recommendations of the HLEG AI. These documents set the foundation for our contribution to the upcoming communication of the European Commission on artificial intelligence. Game-changing potential Let’s remind ourselves why this is worth getting right. AI can improve the speed and accuracy of diagnostics and medical imaging; support real-time monitoring and preventative healthcare – intercepting disease in very early stages, sometimes even before it happens. It can also bring a new approach to the delivery of care, optimising the use of healthcare resources, including health professionals’ time; supporting doctors to be at their best and treat patients in better ways than ever before; and empowering patients to manage their well-being. But there is...
This blog is part of the GMTCC 2018 blog series. You can follow the conversation under #GMTCC and find more details and at gmtcc.com . Check out related blogs: Swifter, Higher, Stronger: Promoting MedTech Ethics on the Global Stage , How to create and maintain an ethical culture , Progress and new challenges after 10 years of collaboration , Distributors play key role in compliance, New industry code must safeguard independent medical education and Health data can transform our lives-but must be used wisely Trust between patients and their physicians is critical in healthcare. It empowers patients and enables them to make informed decisions knowing that their caregivers have their best interests in mind. Though the practice of medicine does vary in different parts of the world this is a universal constant. As such it is important that everyone understands how healthcare professionals interact with the industries, which provide the tools of modern medicine. The medical technology sector is one of those key industries which develops and provides novel solutions to healthcare problems old and new. The Global Medical Technology Alliance (GMTA), of which MedTech Europe is a founding member, represents the medical technology industry around the globe. We are proud to announce that the Alliance has agreed on a set of global principles of ethical business practices through a Joint Global Ethical Declaration . One of the most important missions of the GMTA has been to advance compliance and ethical business practices globally, in way that promotes innovation and enhances patient access to innovative technologies. The recognition of these principles which are universally applicable is a key step in ensuring this. The GMTA principles lay down simple and pragmatic approaches for the development of codes of ethics for industry around the world, underpinned by two simple concepts: 1) Supporting...
This blog is part of the GMTCC 2018 blog series. You can follow the conversation under #GMTCC and find more details and at gmtcc.com . Check out related blogs: Swifter, Higher, Stronger: Promoting MedTech Ethics on the Global Stage , Global Responsibility, Global Ethics and Compliance, Global Principles for MedTech Innovation , Progress and new challenges after 10 years of collaboration , Distributors play key role in compliance , New industry code must safeguard independent medical education and Health data can transform our lives-but must be used wisely The value of behaving with integrity is increasingly clear: companies who understand the importance of ethics attract the best people, protect their brands and maximise business performance. However, good behaviour is not something that happens by accident. Ethics is intentional . The question is how a company can develop an ethical culture that helps associates find more meaning in their work, appeals to more customers and end-users, and ultimately helps business to thrive. It is common for companies to state their mission, vision and values. But what really sets your company apart is by helping your associates truly understand these and live them daily. Training – and regular retraining – is essential. While leaders can and must set an example, they also must train and educate associates about exactly “what right looks like.” A single associate’s lack of knowledge can have consequences for your company. For example, what if a new associate comes from an industry where doing business on the golf course is the norm? That person may have high integrity but still need training on the unique requirements of the ethical code your company follows. Providing easy access to training material and delivering in-person training are vital. Where your business operates globally, training resources should be locally relevant and, wherever...
This blog is part of the GMTCC 2018 blog series. You can follow the conversation under #GMTCC and find more details and at gmtcc.com . Check out related blogs: How to create and maintain an ethical culture , Global Responsibility, Global Ethics and Compliance, Global Principles for MedTech Innovation , Progress and new challenges after 10 years of collaboration , Distributors play key role in compliance , New industry code must safeguard independent medical education and Health data can transform our lives- but must be used wisely The recent winter Olympics have offered a thrill of competition along with a wonderful opportunity to connect for a short time with the world beyond our borders through this remarkable athletic event. The Olympics motto, “ Citius, Altius, Fortius” – swifter, higher, stronger – resonates with us as we think about the pace of technological progress in the medical sector, and the Olympic ideals of friendship, solidarity and fair play remind us that we need to work together to achieve the highest standards of business ethics as our companies pursue success in the rapidly evolving medtech field. The Legal & Compliance teams at AdvaMed and MedTech Europe are particularly proud of how innovative companies with global perspectives and worldwide markets have come together to collaborate to promote business ethics, corporate compliance and patient centricity on the global stage. The MedTech industry has had a stringent code of ethics for a number of years now-- because patients everywhere deserve confidence in the integrity of medical decision making. One high-priority area for these codes has been setting a framework for interactions with health care professionals (HCPs) both through the Code of Ethics of AdvaMed and the one of MedTech Europe . These interactions are a key component of medical technology research and development, and they...
Following on the footsteps of our American colleagues , MedTech Europe would like to offer some thoughts on the issue of transparency and disclosure laws and how certain adaptations could help to frame transparency for a new reality. Over the last few years, a number of European countries have passed transparency or disclosure (sometimes also called “Sunshine”) laws which require life science industry to track and publicly report certain payments and transfers of value made to Healthcare Professionals (HCPs) and Healthcare Organisations (HCOs) such as hospitals or medical societies. The objective of such laws is to provide patients with enhanced transparency into the relationships healthcare providers have with life science manufacturers, including medical technology companies (1) . The new MedTech Europe Code of Ethical Business Practice upholds the same objective while addressing the fragmentation created by the different national rules. More importantly, the Code goes a step further. Let us explain: the Code which entered into force this January introduces several important changes to the way the medical technology industry interacts with HCPs. One key aspect is the prohibition for our member companies to directly support HCPs to attend Third Party Organised Educational Conferences (e.g. paying for the registration fee, travel and lodging). Furthermore, the Code introduces transparency requirements for Educational Grants. They key objective is for companies to stop selecting the HCPs who receive financial support to attend such conferences. This change means that, from 1 January 2018, HCPs’ independent medical education can only be supported via Educational Grants, They will be provided to an independent third-party, such as a hospital or a scientific society, instead of taking the form of direct and unilateral transfers of value to an individual HCP (such as registration fee, travel and lodging costs). Moreover, companies will no longer be involved in the selection...
The MedTech Europe Code of Ethical Business Practice entered into force on the 1 st January 2017, with the phase-out of direct sponsorship that needs to be implemented in less than a year from now. The Code has been the topic of many conversations . However, until recently, we did not have the opinion of individual Healthcare Professionals. Our conversations happened in particular with the organisations representing them. In January, we formally interviewed a sample of Healthcare Professionals coming from different countries. This blog is about sharing the key findings of these interviews. As a background note, most aspects regulated by the Code were already covered by these previous Codes, but there is one fundamental change brought by the new Code that affects Healthcare Professionals. We are of course talking about the change in the model of support to Healthcare Professionals attending Third Party Organised Educational Conferences. The new model requires that a company provides an Educational Grant to a Healthcare Organisation (e.g. medical society, hospital), the latter selecting the Healthcare Professional(s) attending the conference. The Grant covers the costs such as travel, accommodation, and conference registration. The direct selection and support by companies of Healthcare Professionals to attend a given Conference or Congress will not be allowed anymore at the end of this year. The focus of the interviews was about this change. During our discussions with Healthcare Professionals regarding this new model of Educational Grants, one thing became clear; the majority of interviewed Healthcare Professionals were not at all against the change. In fact, a majority welcomed the changes as, according to them, it would bring more legitimacy and transparency. Some Healthcare Professionals also advocated that an independent selection by hospitals was much better than industry selecting HCPs. In their view, hospitals know better who needs training and...