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You are here: HomeAbout the USPSTFConflict of Interest Disclosures

Conflict of Interest Disclosures

The public must have confidence in the integrity of the process by which the U.S. Preventive Services Task Force (USPSTF or Task Force) makes its recommendations. The reputations of the USPSTF members as highly regarded researchers, clinicians, and academic scholars contribute to this objective and must be protected if the USPSTF recommendation statements are to be accepted and implemented. It is also essential that Task Force deliberations benefit from members' vigorous exchange of perspectives that are derived from and shaped by the member's research and/or practice experiences.

The intent of requesting disclosure of any potential conflict of interest is to ensure that the USPSTF provides a balanced, independent, objective, and scientifically rigorous product (including its recommendation statements) by understanding other interests that could potentially influence the work and decisionmaking of its members. The USPSTF requires each member to disclose all information regarding any possible financial and nonfinancial conflicts of interest prior to each meeting for all topics under development or that will be discussed at each meeting. Previous disclosures for continuing topics must also be updated to reflect changes in a member’s situation since the form was last completed.

Prior to each meeting or to new member appointment, all disclosures are reviewed by the Task Force Chairs according to the criteria specified in the USPSTF Procedure Manual and determined to be either Level 1, 2, or 3. The Task Force Chairs determine the final action on the member's eligibility to participate on a specific topic based on the nature and significance of the potential conflict.

  • Level 1 disclosures include nonfinancial disclosures that would not affect the judgment of a Task Force member. These disclosures do not require any action.
  • Level 2 disclosures include financial disclosures of $1,000 or less and nonfinancial disclosures that are relevant to a topic but not anticipated to affect the judgment of the Task Force member for that topic. These disclosures are announced at the Task Force meeting, but do not limit the Task Force member’s participation in the topic process.
  • Level 3 disclosures include financial disclosures of a larger amount and significant nonfinancial disclosures that may affect the Task Force member's view on the topic. Actions for Level 3 disclosures vary according to the nature of the conflict, and may include preventing the member from serving as lead of a topic or on the workgroup of a topic, preventing the member from serving as a primary spokesperson for a topic, or preventing the member from taking part in all topic activities. As all new Task Force members are reviewed for conflicts prior to joining the Task Force, Level 3 disclosures are uncommon.

All decisions are kept on file. The USPSTF Procedure Manual provides a complete description of the criteria for each level and range of possible recommended actions.

Level 3 Disclosures for Current USPSTF Members

Susan J. Curry:

Topic(s): Primary Care Interventions to Prevent Tobacco or Nicotine Use in Children and Adolescents

Level 3 Disclosure: Dr. Curry has several publications and has completed multiple studies related to this topic, one of which is included in the evidence review supporting this topic. 

Date of Disclosure: June 2017

Action: Dr. Curry may participate in the topic workgroup and deliberate and vote on the topic.

David Grossman:

Topic(s): Behavioral Counseling to Prevent Skin Cancer; Screening for Adolescent Idiopathic Scoliosis

Level 3 Disclosure: Dr. Grossman is an investigator at Kaiser Permanente Washington Health Research Institute. The Institute subcontracts with the Kaiser Permanente Research Affiliates Evidence-based Practice Center, which is conducting the evidence review for these topics. Dr. Grossman has no ties to any members of the team performing the evidence reviews.

Date of Disclosure: March 2015

Action: Dr. Grossman may not participate in the topic workgroups but may deliberate and vote on the topics.

Michael J. Barry:

Topic(s): Screening for Prostate Cancer

Level 3 Disclosure: Dr. Barry has done extensive work on prostate cancer, including receiving multiple grants and authoring publications. He has also expressed that he has strongly held beliefs related to prostate cancer.

Date of Disclosure: January 2017

Action: Dr. Barry will be recused from the topic. He may not participate in the topic workgroup or deliberate or vote on the topic.

Karina W. Davidson: None

Chyke A. Doubeni: None

John W. Epling, Jr.: None

Alex R. Kemper: None

Alex H. Krist: None

Ann E. Kurth:

Topic(s): Screening for HIV Infection in Asymptomatic, Nonpregnant Adolescents and Adults; Screening for HIV Infection in Pregnant Women; and Pre-Exposure Prophylaxis for the Prevention of HIV Infection

Level 3 Disclosure: Dr. Kurth has done extensive work in and has authored publications on screening for HIV and HIV pre-exposure prophylaxis. She is the principal investigator on multiple active grants related to these topics. She is also a member of the Expert Group who contributed to the International Association of Providers of AIDS Care (IAPAC) recommendations on the expansion of HIV self-testing.

Date of Disclosure: October 2016

Action: Dr. Kurth may deliberate and vote on these topics.

C. Seth Landefeld: None

Carol M. Mangione: None

Douglas K. Owens:

Topic(s): Screening for Cardiovascular Disease Risk With Electrocardiography; Screening for Atrial Fibrillation With Electrocardiography

Level 3 Disclosure: Dr. Owens worked with Zoll Inc. on a cost-effectiveness analysis of wearable cardioverter-defibrillators. He also has several publications related to these topics. 

Date of Disclosure: January 2017

Action: Dr. Owens may deliberate and vote on these topics.

Topic(s): Screening for HIV Infection in Asymptomatic, Nonpregnant Adolescents and Adults; Screening for HIV Infection in Pregnant Women; and Pre-Exposure Prophylaxis for the Prevention of HIV Infection

Level 3 Disclosure: Dr. Owens has extensive work experience and publications related to these topics.

Date of Disclosure: January 2017

Action: Dr. Owens may participate in the topic workgroups and deliberate and vote on these topics.

Topic(s): Screening for Hepatitis C Virus Infection in Adolescents and Adults

Level 3 Disclosure: Dr. Owens has extensive work experience and publications related to this topic.

Date of Disclosure: January 2017

Action: Dr. Owens may participate in the topic workgroup and deliberate and vote on this topic.

Maureen G. Phipps: None

Michael Silverstein:

Topic: Primary Care Interventions to Prevent Child Maltreatment

Level 3 Disclosure: Dr. Silverstein is a co-investigator on a RO1 grant from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention on the prevention of child maltreatment, including interventions for child maltreatment.

Date of Disclosure: October 2016

Action: Dr. Silverstein may participate in the topic workgroup and deliberate and vote on the topic.

Topic: Interventions to Prevent Perinatal Depression

Level 3 Disclosure: Dr. Silverstein has extensive experience and has authored publications on interventions for perinatal depression. He is an investigator on an active randomized, controlled trial funded by the National Institutes of Health concerning prevention of postpartum depression among mothers with preterm infants.

Date of Disclosure: October 2016

Action: Dr. Silverstein may deliberate and vote on the topic.

Melissa A. Simon:

Topic: Screening for Cervical Cancer

Level 3 Disclosure: Dr. Simon has received a grant from the Merck Foundation related to the topic of cervical cancer. Merck & Co. is the maker of the GARDASIL® vaccine for the human papillomavirus.

Date of Disclosure: January 2017

Action: Dr. Simon may participate in the topic workgroup and deliberate and vote on the topic.

Topic: Medication Use for the Risk Reduction of Primary Breast Cancer in Women

Level 3 Disclosure: Dr. Simon has received a grant from the Pfizer Foundation. Pfizer Inc. is the maker of AROMASIN® (an aromatase inhibitor) and tamoxifen citrate tablets. Tamoxifen is the primary medication that is being considered for this topic, and aromatase inhibitors may also be considered. This has been determined to be a topic where there is a possible direct conflict.

Date of Disclosure: January 2017

Action: Dr. Simon will be recused from the topic. She may not participate in the topic workgroup or deliberate or vote on the topic.

Topic: Risk Assessment, Genetic Counseling, and Genetic Testing for BRCA-Related Cancer

Level 3 Disclosure: Dr. Simon has received a grant from the Pfizer Foundation. Pfizer Inc. is the maker of AROMASIN® (an aromatase inhibitor) and tamoxifen citrate tablets, both of which are addressed in this topic.

Date of Disclosure: January 2017

Action: Dr. Simon may participate in the topic workgroup and deliberate and vote on the topic.

Chien-Wen Tseng: None

Current as of: September 2017

Internet Citation: Conflict of Interest Disclosures. U.S. Preventive Services Task Force. September 2017.
https://www.uspreventiveservicestaskforce.org/Page/Name/conflict-of-interest-disclosures

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