Proposal to allow drug companies to give information to public sparks outcry

BMJ 2008; 337 doi: (Published 16 December 2008) Cite this as: BMJ 2008;337:a3043
  1. Rory Watson
  1. 1Brussels

    Consumers’ groups and medical organisations have reacted angrily to moves by the European Commission to allow drug companies to provide information on prescription only drugs to the public.

    The proposal to relax the existing restrictions is in a package of measures designed to make the drug industry more competitive, encourage research, clamp down on counterfeit products, and guarantee patients across Europe the same degree of information on drugs.

    Presenting the measures, Günter Verheugen, the industry commissioner, said, “European citizens should benefit from safe, innovative, and accessible medicines. They should be best informed about available medicines and treatments, since their …

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