Last updated on: 4/9/2010 | Author:

Kurt C. Stange, MD, PhD Biography

Professor of Family Medicine, Epidemiology & Biostatistics, Oncology and Sociology at Case Western Reserve University
Con to the question "Should Prescription Drugs Be Advertised Directly to Consumers?"

“It is time to ban direct-to-consumer (DTC) advertising of prescription drugs. The current US system of pharmaceutical company self-monitoring and Food and Drug Administration oversight is not working…

[S]ources show an emerging public health tragedy that is happening so surreptitiously that we are blind to the magnitude of the encroaching effect on the quality of health care and the health of Americans.

The use of broad media coverage to encourage prescription drug use is a shotgun where an individualized, personalized approach is needed. These ads present biased appeals to the masses to influence decisions about drugs…

DTC ads manipulate the patient’s agenda and steal precious time away from an evidence-based primary care clinician agenda that is attempting to promote healthy behavior, screen for early-stage treatable disease, and address mental health…

[A]ction is needed if the insidious, pervasive, detrimental, and misconstrued effects of DTC ads are to be stemmed in the United States and New Zealand, as they have been in the rest of the developed world…

Only a ban will work. The impossibility of regulating complex overt and covert multichannel messages with both rational and emotional appeals, the power imbalance between the public good and the commercial imperative, the difficulty of anticipating ads’ unintended consequences, and the availability of less-biased sources of information and motivation all argue for totally proscribing DTC ads.”

“Time to Ban Direct-to-Consumer Prescription Drug Marketing,”, 2007

Involvement and Affiliations:
  • Professor, Family Medicine, Epidemiology & Biostatistics, Oncology, and Sociology, Case Western Reserve University
  • Gertrude Donnelly Hess Professor of Oncology Research, Case Western Reserve University
  • Clinical Research Professor, American Cancer Society
  • Editor, Annals of Family Medicine
  • Director, Center for Research in Family Practice and Primary Care, American Academy of Family Physicians
  • Associate Director, Case Comprehensive Cancer Center
  • Physician with a family medicine practice in Cleveland, OH
  • Member, Institute of Medicine, National Academy of Sciences
  • Board Certified, American Board of Family Practice, American Board of Preventive Medicine
  • Former President, North American Primary Care Research Group
  • Fellowship, Preventive Medicine, University of North Carolina Hospitals, 1988
  • Completed an internship and residency in Family Practice at Duke University Medical Center
  • Internship, Family Practice, Duke University Medical Center, 1984
  • PhD, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, 1989
  • MD, Albany Medical College, 1983
  • None found
Quoted in:
Pro & Con Quotes: Should Prescription Drugs Be Advertised Directly to Consumers?