Galveston County Daily News (Internet / Print) 09/17/06 The medical school at Stanford University has responded to a clear problem with a clear policy. The problem is the erosion of public trust in medicine due to drug companies’ influence. Stanford adopted a policy that prohibits physicians who work at its hospitals from accepting any gifts — no matter how small — from representatives of pharmaceutical producers. The relationship between the drug companies and medical schools is way too cozy. The Stanford policy has drawn some criticism. But Stanford obviously takes this problem of conflicts of interest seriously. Stanford’s right. It is a serious problem, worthy of serious debate. And I’d love to see the medical school on our doorstep — the University of Texas Medical Branch — play an important role in it.