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Healthy Skepticism Library item: 5164

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

Lexchin J.
Physicians and drug companies interact.
Can Fam Physician 1993 Sep 01; 39:1881-2


Abstract:

A partial review of the literature shows that general practitioners accept a variety of information of interactions with the pharmaceutical industry and the result of these interactions is often less appropriate prescribing.

Keywords:
*letter to the editor/*nonsystematic review/Canada/ quality of information/ sponsored symposia & conferences/ sales representatives/ quality of prescribing/ primary care doctors/attitude toward promotion/ATTITUDES REGARDING PROMOTION: HEALTH PROFESSIONALS/ETHICAL ISSUES IN PROMOTION: GIFT GIVING/EVALUATION OF PROMOTION: DETAILING/EVALUATION OF PROMOTION: GENERAL QUALITY OF INFORMATION/INFLUENCE OF PROMOTION: PRESCRIBING, DRUG USE/PROMOTION AS A SOURCE OF INFORMATION: DOCTORS


Notes:

Reply to: Tony Dixon, Canadian Family Physician 1993;39:1298-1300.
Reply from: Tony Dixon, Canadian Family Physician 1993;39:1882.

 

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Cases of wilful misrepresentation are a rarity in medical advertising. For every advertisement in which nonexistent doctors are called on to testify or deliberately irrelevant references are bunched up in [fine print], you will find a hundred or more whose greatest offenses are unquestioning enthusiasm and the skill to communicate it.

The best defence the physician can muster against this kind of advertising is a healthy skepticism and a willingness, not always apparent in the past, to do his homework. He must cultivate a flair for spotting the logical loophole, the invalid clinical trial, the unreliable or meaningless testimonial, the unneeded improvement and the unlikely claim. Above all, he must develop greater resistance to the lure of the fashionable and the new.
- Pierre R. Garai (advertising executive) 1963