Few universities make required reports to the government about the financial conflicts of their researchers, and even when such conflicts are reported, university administrators rarely require those researchers to eliminate or reduce these conflicts, the New York Times reports. In a report expected to be made public Nov. 19, Daniel R. Levinson, the inspector general of the Department of Health and Human Services, said 90 percent of universities relied solely on the researchers themselves to decide whether the money they made in consulting and other relationships with drug and device makers was relevant to their government-financed research. And half of universities do not ask their faculty members to disclose the amount of money or stock they make from drug and device makers, so the potential for extensive conflicts with their government-financed research is often known only to the researchers themselves, the report concluded. Eric G. Campbell, an associate professor at the Institute for Health Policy at Harvard Medical School, said universities had no interest in putting real limits on the incomes of their star researchers for fear that those researchers would leave for institutions with fewer restrictions. "This report clearly raises the question of whether these institutions are capable of managing these conflicts themselves," Campbell said…

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