New Australian Medical Association logo affiliation program

AMA_logo_wind

In a move to bolster consultancies for its members, the Australian Medical Association (AMA) announced an innovative affiliation program Tuesday last (18th March 2014).

“No medical professional wants to appear mercenary, and as a broad-based membership group AMA can not be seen to endorse specific companies,” explained AMA President Dr Steve Hambleton. “Yet our members felt there was overriding need to find ways to better attract corporate benefactors.”

After careful discussion, the Federal Council, Hambleton said, agreed that as they often condemn whole industries that don’t benefit members, AMA ought to feel free to promote friendly industries “in generalised terms”.

In addition to issuing position statements that provide an outlet for selected industry communications, the Federal Council approved the innovative suggestion of Vice President Professor Geoffrey Dobb to begin a series of logo modifications expressing AMA’s collaborations.

“Medical professionals aligning themselves with corporate goals has sometimes caught us up short in the past – cigarettes being a famous example”, Dobb said. “The goal was to make it appear that the industry is endorsing us, rather than the other way around”, he explained.

The first companies to benefit, ie to benefit the AMA, from this program are those developing large-scale wind energy. “It was an obvious fit”, said Dobb, adding, “It’s a shame we can’t support tobacco any more – ie, partner with Big Tobacco to balance our interests and thereby take advantage of an important source of support for the work of AMA members – a softly smoking cigarette would have worked in well, too.”

As for Hambleton, he is very pleased with this solution and hopes it will be lucrative enough to expand to other industries. “Medicine is not practised in an ivory tower. We are also stakeholders in many of these companies – it’s a no-brainer, really.”

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