Founder and Director of the Arizona Center for Integrative Medicine
Con to the question "Should Prescription Drugs Be Advertised Directly to Consumers?"
"A major component of today's high-tech medical treatment is the reckless overuse of pharmaceutical drugs. An estimated 50 percent of Americans take at least one prescribed medication every day; in 2007, drug sales accounted for an astonishing $315 billion in revenue. When I was growing up, far fewer Americans took prescription drugs...
Direct-to-consumer (DTC) pharmaceutical marketing... is a major engine behind this unfortunate change. American television, radio, internet and print are saturated with ads for every imaginable drug, typically ending with an entreaty to 'ask your doctor.' In 2004, American drug companies spent 24.4% of their sales revenue on promotion, versus just 13.4% for research and development...
Drug ads strengthen our belief in pharmaceutical drugs as the cures for all of our problems. In fact, the consequences of poor lifestyle choices cannot be undone with pills...
Because heavily advertised drugs have such vast profit potential, political and financial interests collude to speed them to market before they have received sufficient scientific scrutiny...
The free market works well in many ways, but it has failed us here. Whether it is done independently or as part of an omnibus health care reform initiative, we need to make the same decision that the rest of the developed world has made: that is, ban direct-to-consumer advertising of prescription pharmaceutical products."
"Should You Get Your Drug Information from an Actor?," www.huffingtonpost.com, Aug. 1, 2009
Experts Individuals with MDs, DOs, PhDs, MPHs, or equivalent advanced degrees in fields relevant to pharmaceutical drugs and public health; top-level federal government officials significantly involved in issues related to prescription drug advertising. [Note: Experts definition varies by site.]
Involvement and Affiliations:
Founder and Director, Arizona Center for Integrative Medicine, University of Arizona Health Sciences Center
Clinical Professor of Medicine and Professor of Public Health, University of Arizona
Lovell-Jones Professor of Integrative Rheumatology, University of Arizona
Director of Integrative Health and Healing, Miraval Life in Balance Resort, Tucson (AZ)
Chairman, Weil Foundation
Columnist, Prevention magazine
Editor-in-Chief, Integrative Medicine
Recipient, Pioneer Award in Integrative Medicine, Institute for Health and Healing, 2006
Recipient, John P. McGovern Award in Behavioral Sciences, Smithsonian Associates, 2005