AIDS Drug Advertisements ‘Trivialize’ AIDS Campaigns, Editorial States
"The increasing tendency for pharmaceutical companies to directly market drugs to consumers is a concern in itself," a San Francisco Chronicle editorial says, adding, "Americans are being bombarded with slick advertisements urging them" to ask for drugs "by name." But these ads are "irritating to doctors and HMOs" because patients request prescriptions that are more expensive or are associated with more side effects. The Chronicle says, "At the very least, such advertisements should be forthright -- especially when the stakes are as high as they are in the use of medicines to suppress the human immunodeficiency virus that causes AIDS." Such ads, "featuring buffed men in vigorous outdoor activities, give the distinctly false impression that there are magical drugs that make living with HIV a breeze. It is not." The FDA's ordering of drug makers to "stop overtly misleading advertising" was "a good move," the Chronicle concludes (San Francisco Chronicle, 5/1).This is part of the KHN Morning Briefing, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.