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Healthy Skepticism Library item: 19243

Warning: This library includes all items relevant to health product marketing that we are aware of regardless of quality. Often we do not agree with all or part of the contents.

 

Publication type: Journal Article

Watson R
Drug companies may provide information directly to EU patients but under strict conditions
BMJ 2010 Nov 30; 341:
http://www.bmj.com/content/341/bmj.c6883.extract


Abstract:

Drug companies will be able to provide information to the public on prescription drugs but only under strict conditions, according to draft legislation overwhelmingly adopted by the European parliament on 24 November.

The new measures would enable patients in European Union countries to receive data on a drug’s characteristics and the disease or condition for which it is designed. Companies would be allowed to provide basic non-promotional information such as product characteristics in package leaflets and an accessible version of a drug’s assessment report. Patients would be able to receive more specific answers on request. All information would require prior authorisation from national authorities. …

 

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As an advertising man, I can assure you that advertising which does not work does not continue to run. If experience did not show beyond doubt that the great majority of doctors are splendidly responsive to current [prescription drug] advertising, new techniques would be devised in short order. And if, indeed, candor, accuracy, scientific completeness, and a permanent ban on cartoons came to be essential for the successful promotion of [prescription] drugs, advertising would have no choice but to comply.
- Pierre R. Garai (advertising executive) 1963