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    Should Rx Drugs Be Advertised to Consumers?

    challenge posed by Kate Freeman 374 days 14 hours 18 minutes ago

    Category: World
    Challenge Forum

    Re: Should Rx Drugs Be Advertised to Consumers?

    No, medicines should not be advertised directly to consumers, and their advertisement to doctors also needs to be restricted, though perhaps not as aggressively.

    Consumers, generally, do not have the medical knowledge necessary to evaluate the claims made by drug manufacturers in these commercials, and they most certainly will not be aware of what kind of medications that they will need.

    But this isn't just an academic concern about medical ethics. Irresponsible advertising can have real consequences. For instance, when Purdue Pharmaceuticals spent millions of dollars advertising opioids to doctors in the 1990s, this led to a spike in the number of painkiller prescriptions and this effort on their part is widely credited with initiating the opioid crisis. Before this advertising campaign, opioids were rightly controlled very carefully and prescribed only in limited circumstances, for instance, in end-of-life care and inpatient ICU treatment for people recovering from severe injuries. This is because it was understood that these drugs are addictive and have a high abuse potential. But Purdue's advertising efforts were successful in suppressing the fear of physicians that their patients could become addicted. Fast forward to 2017, with thousands of people dying every year of opioid abuse and billions of dollars of productivity being lost to drug addiction, and it's clear that this was a mistake.

    Another problem with drug advertising is that advertisements are primarily used to promote new drugs, and new drugs tend to be very expensive. It's great that new medicines continue to be developed since it means more options for treatment, but this can be a problem when patients are prescribed an expensive new drug when an older one with a generic formulation would have worked just as well. This has been addressed recently by cancer treatment specialists: in the last few years, there has been a wave of new medicines that, despite being staggeringly expensive, do little
    to improve long-term outcomes and survival rates compared to already existing treatment options.

    A much better solution would be to have the government assist companies with funding for R&D. This takes the pressure off and allows them to operate like scientists instead of salespeople.

    Re: Should Rx Drugs Be Advertised to Consumers?

    Yeah, it's bull. Has people thinking they need certain drugs, when they are not even sick in the first place. It's ridiculous. And the couple in the tubs! Are you for real? And now, folks holding up smiley face signs, advertising for depression.

    Meds shouldn't be advertised. We live in a over medicated country as it is. EVeryone thinks they need a pill for every little ailment.


    Re: Should Rx Drugs Be Advertised to Consumers?

    It's interesting to come back and read everyone's views!

    Re: Should Rx Drugs Be Advertised to Consumers?


    Interesting idea that the cause of overprescription in this country is doctors' fault. I do not agree with this idea because I believe there are other factors at play here.

    Have you considered the fact that patients coming into a doctor's office and asking for a certain medication might be hard to turn down? Or that there may be ingrained behaviors that they were taught in medical school that lead them to reaching first for a prescription pad before another treatment option? Is this their fault? I would argue no.


    Re: Should Rx Drugs Be Advertised to Consumers?


    I am amazed at the discussion this forum has sparked. As I previously commented I think that Rx drugs should not be advertised to consumers. It is interesting to read the comments that were added after I posted. This seems to me to be what the majority of people on this forum also think.