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Speaker Disclosures Explained

Your responsibility

As a potential presenter, expect that the Provider will ask you to provide information about your financial and nonfinancial relationships relative to the course content you are presenting. This information may be collected through a disclosure form or other similar process. Once you return the disclosure information to the Provider, the Provider will review the information, communicate your eligibility to be a presenter, and tell you what you need to disclose immediately prior to the beginning of your presentation (either in writing or verbally). All presenters must make a disclosure statement. You will make a disclosure prior to the start of the course even if you have no relevant financial or nonfinancial relationships. You should alert the provider if there are any changes in your financial and nonfinancial relationships that occur after your initial disclosure to the Provider but prior to the presentation. Presenters who fail to give disclosure information to Providers are not eligible to present content for ASHA CEU credit.

Relevant financial relationships defined

Financial relationships are those relationships in which the individual benefits by receiving a salary, royalty, intellectual property rights, gift, speaking fee, consulting fee, honorarium, ownership interest (e.g., stocks, stock options, or other ownership interest, excluding diversified mutual funds), or other financial benefit. Financial relationships can also include "contracted research" in which the institution gets the grant and manages the funds and the individual is the principal or named investigator on the grant.

Relevant nonfinancial relationships defined

Nonfinancial relationships are those relationships—including personal, professional, political, institutional, religious, or other—that might bias an individual. Planners and instructional personnel should think about the course content that they are presenting and then determine whether they have any personal, professional, political, institutional, religious, or other relationship that needs to be disclosed. The planners and instructional personnel must disclose to the Provider all nonfinancial relationships related to course content. The Provider will determine—through a guided discussion with the planners and instructional personnel—whether anything they disclosed cannot be resolved through disclosure to the attendees. Nonfinancial relationships must be disclosed during promotional efforts about the course and prior to the beginning of the course. If there are no nonfinancial relationships, then this must be disclosed as well.  

Types of relevant nonfinancial relationships that planners and instructional personnel should disclose

  • Personal—the individual has a personal friendship with someone in the company whose products the presenter is discussing; the individual has a family member or friend with a disorder that the presenter is covering in the course
  • Professional—the presenter is a member of an association or group, and he or she is talking about that group's services in the presentation; the presenter has a professional bias about a way to deliver a particular service; he or she is an employee of a company that is the ASHA Approved CE Provider of the course
  • Political—the presenter has a political bias about a topic (e.g., health care reform), and his or her bias is toward supporting a particular party's position on this issue
  • Institutional—the presenter is affiliated with an institution or organization (e.g., serves on a committee or board of that organization); the presenter is a member of that organization and/or gives money to its causes
  • Religious—a bias that is based on religious tenets (e.g., the presenter has a bias toward service delivery at end of life on the basis of his or her religious beliefs).

Examples of speaker disclosures for promotion materials

See sample disclosure statements for instructional personnel with both financial and nonfinancial disclosures

See sample disclosure statements for instructional personnel who have no financial or nonfinancial relationships to disclose.

Disqualifications for an individual from course planning or delivery

Failure to disclose disqualifies someone from being considered as a planner or presenter. Once someone discloses, the steps to qualify or disqualify the person rests with the Provider. Disqualification might depend on the nature of the course content, the relationship that the planners and instructional personnel have to the Provider organization, and the relationships that they disclose on their forms. Each situation is different. For example, a Provider might disqualify someone if they have a strong relationship with a competitor.

Marketing products in disclosure statements is not allowed

It is important that Providers and presenters work together to develop disclosure statements. Providers can help the presenter develop appropriate wording to use in disclosure statements to learners. For example, in a situation in which the presenter has written a number of books on the topic, the disclosure statement could say, "I am Dr. XYZ. I am the author of 17 books on XXX topic, and I receive royalties for the sale of those books." It is not necessary or appropriate to list the name of the books and/or products for sale.

ASHA Corporate Partners