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Subject Topic: HPCSA and the captive audience Post ReplyPost New Topic
Poll Question: Ethical for the HPCSA to sell advertising
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 HPCSA and the captive audience
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Posted: 2010 November 24 at 9:57pm | IP Logged Quote DavidvdW

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Location: South Africa
Posts: 367
The Health Professions Council of South Africa recently sent out an email announcing the publication of a new magazine, to be sent to their full database of health care practitioners.

Here's an excerpt from their email

"The HPCSA is publishing an annual guide to all the health care professionals of South Africa. It will reach 150 000  of South Africa's most powerful and influential healthcare audience, making the guide the largest reach in the Healthcare Industry. I believe that this is an excellent opportunity for your CPD courses to reach this medical professions market.
This advertising opportunity below will give your CPD courses:

  • The largest reach of any medical magazine in the market with a 155 000 print run directly to every registered healthcare professional.
  • One-year shelf life.
  • Information on codes of conduct, rules and regulations around the healthcare industry in other words a critical guide that every medical or healthcare practitioner would need for the year.
It will also carry valuable information on each of the 12 Professional Boards of the healthcare industry and the latest technological breakthroughs and the latest products on the market."  

Here's their rates as per their rate card attached to the email.


The Health Professions Council is a statutory body charged by the law of the land with the regulation of the various health care professions. All practitioners are obliged by law to register with the HPCSA and to pay an annual fee to fund the boards activities. Failure to do so while practicing is a criminal offence, punishable by a jail term.

The HPCSA is also by law, responsible for the regulation of continuing professional development (CPD) activities. Providers of CPD activites are required by law to register their activities with the HPCSA, which also requires payment of a fee.

The HPCSA is therefore publishing to it's legally mandated database, a magazine advertsing for a not inconsiderable fee, activities that it is legally mandated to regulate and control.

Now, the question is, does this constitute a conflict of interest for the HPCSA? I'd love to hear opinions on this.

If there is no conflict of interest then perhaps this is merely a case of the medical and associated professions allowing their pecuniary petticoats to show? Again, I'd love to hear your opinion on this.

Edited by DavidvdW on 2010 November 24 at 10:04pm
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