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Healthy Skepticism Library item: 6155

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

Mansfield PR.
MaLAM: encouraging trustworthy drug promotion
Essential Drugs Monitor 1994; (17):6


Abstract:

This article gives the history behind the Medical Lobby for Appropriate Marketing and describes the mode of operation of the organization. MaLAM is not anti-industry but aims to encourage companies to provide reliable information to assist appropriate therapy. Until recently, MaLAM focussed almost exclusively on problems in developing countries but a branch of the organization is now dealing with promotion in Australia.

Keywords:
*analysis/Australia/developing countries/Medical Lobby for Appropriate Marketing/MaLAM/quality of information/attitude toward promotion/attitude toward industry/ATTITUDES REGARDING PROMOTION: HEALTH PROFESSIONALS/PROMOTION AND HEALTH NEEDS: PROMOTION IN DEVELOPING COUNTRIES/REGULATION, CODES, GUIDELINES: FEEDBACK TO COMPANIES/REGULATION, CODES, GUIDELINES: HEALTH PROFESSIONAL ORGANIZATIONS

 

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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