According to a story running on the AP wire today, “Spending on brand advertising is flat while disease awareness campaigns are flourishing. The look of the ads are more straightforward; doctors bluntly describing products is becoming de rigueur.”
Read that out loud. That’s the sound of voluntary guidelines working.
The AP continues, “The possibility of more government regulation looms. Late last year, the Food and Drug Administration held two days of public hearings on drug advertising and is now reviewing comments on the subject. The FDA said it is too early to say whether any new rules will be instituted, but some say it is likely.”
Well, I was there (in fact, I testified) and the message from the senior management of the FDA who sat on the panel was NOT that new rules would be instituted, but rather that the agency and industry need to work together to make direct-to-consumer communications better.
And that’s a good thing.