AMA Wants to Halt DTC Drug Ads

NEW YORK The American Medical Association is calling for a temporary moratorium on direct-to-consumer prescription drug and implantable medical device advertising.

Nearly 10 years after the U.S. government began allowing companies to pitch their products on television, leading to a boom in costly advertising campaigns for branded drugs, the Chicago-based doctors group wants to rethink the policy.

“A temporary moratorium on DTC advertising of prescribed drugs and medical devices will benefit both the patient and physician,” said AMA president-elect Dr. Ronald Davis, in a statement released Thursday. “Physicians will have the opportunity to become better educated on the pros and cons of prescription drug uses before prescribing them, and will be better able to determine when they are best suited for their patients medical needs.”

The AMA also said it had adopted new guidelines for DTC advertising, which would ensure that “objective information” reaches the consumer, and warnings and precautions are presented in “a clear and understandable way.”

—Brandweek staff report