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Direct to consumer drug advertising is billion dollar business in US

BMJ 1999; 319 doi: https://doi.org/10.1136/bmj.319.7213.805 (Published 25 September 1999) Cite this as: BMJ 1999;319:805
  1. Janice Hopkins Tanne
  1. New York

    Advertising prescription drugs to consumers benefits the public, improves their knowledge of health, and may reduce healthcare costs, Mike Magee, senior medical adviser to Pfizer and a urologist at Jefferson Medical College in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, argued at a symposium sponsored by the American Medical Writers Association in New York last week.

    But his views were challenged by Susan Hershberg Adelman, a paediatric surgeon at the University of Michigan and a trustee of the American Medical Association, who said that at their best advertisements could inform consumers, advise them on a healthier lifestyle, and send them to see a doctor, but at their worst they could persuade patients to consume drugs without medical supervision.

    People “see advertisements …

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