corner
Healthy Skepticism
Join us to help reduce harm from misleading health information.
Increase font size   Decrease font size   Print-friendly view   Print
Register Log in

Healthy Skepticism Library item: 5318

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

Bell RA, Kravitz RL, Wilkes MS.
Direct-to-consumer prescription drug advertising and the public.
J Gen Intern Med 1999 Nov 01; 14:(11):651-7
http://www.blackwell-synergy.com/doi/abs/10.1046/j.1525-1497.1999.01049.x


Abstract:

BJECTIVE: Drug manufacturers are intensely promoting their products directly to consumers, but the impact has not been widely studied. Consumers’ awareness and understanding of, attitudes toward, and susceptibility to direct-to-consumer (DTC) drug advertising were examined. DESIGN: Random-digit dialing telephone survey with a random household member selection procedure (completion and response rates, 58% and 69%, respectively). SETTING: Respondents were interviewed while they were at their residences. PARTICIPANTS: Complete data were obtained from 329 adults in Sacramento County, California. MEASUREMENTS AND MAIN RESULTS: Outcome measures included awareness of advertisements for 10 selected drugs, misconceptions about DTC advertising, attitudes toward DTC ads, and behavioral responses to such promotions. The influence of demographic characteristics, health status, attitudes, beliefs, and media exposure on awareness and behaviors was examined. On average, respondents were aware of advertisements for 3.7 of the 10 drugs; awareness varied from 8% for Buspar (buspirone) to 72% for Claritin (loratadine). Awareness was associated with prescription drug use, media exposure, positive attitudes toward DTC advertising, poorer health, and insurance status. Substantial misconceptions were revealed; e.g., 43% thought that only “completely safe” drugs could be advertised. Direct-to-consumer advertisements had led one third of respondents to ask their physicians for drug information and one fifth to request a prescription. CONCLUSIONS: Direct-to-consumer advertisements are reaching the public, but selectively so, and affecting their behaviors. Implications for public policy are examined.

Keywords:
Adult Advertising* California Data Collection Drug Industry* Female Humans Male Middle Aged Prescriptions, Drug* Random Allocation Terminology

 

  Healthy Skepticism on RSS   Healthy Skepticism on Facebook   Healthy Skepticism on Twitter

Please
Click to Register

(read more)

then
Click to Log in
for free access to more features of this website.

Forgot your username or password?

You are invited to
apply for membership
of Healthy Skepticism,
if you support our aims.

Pay a subscription

Support our work with a donation

Buy Healthy Skepticism T Shirts


If there is something you don't like, please tell us. If you like our work, please tell others.

Email a Friend








...to influence multinational corporations effectively, the efforts of governments will have to be complemented by others, notably the many voluntary organisations that have shown they can effectively represent society’s public-health interests…
A small group known as Healthy Skepticism; formerly the Medical Lobby for Appropriate Marketing) has consistently and insistently drawn the attention of producers to promotional malpractice, calling for (and often securing) correction. These organisations [Healthy Skepticism, Médecins Sans Frontières and Health Action International] are small, but they are capable; they bear malice towards no one, and they are inscrutably honest. If industry is indeed persuaded to face up to its social responsibilities in the coming years it may well be because of these associations and others like them.
- Dukes MN. Accountability of the pharmaceutical industry. Lancet. 2002 Nov 23; 360(9346)1682-4.