FDA Starts 'Bad Ad Program'

WASHINGTON, May 11 (UPI) — The U.S. Food and Drug Administration says it has started a program to give healthcare providers a way to report misleading prescription drug advertising.

The FDA said its Bad Ad Program is an educational outreach effort administered by the agency’s Division of Drug Marketing, Advertising and Communications.

“The Bad Ad Program will help healthcare providers recognize misleading prescription drug promotion and provide them with an easy way to report this activity to the agency,” said Thomas Abrams, director of the division.

Abrams said the program will be rolled out in three phases, with Phase 1 engaging healthcare providers at specifically selected medical conventions and partnering with specific medical societies to distribute educational materials. Phases 2 and 3 will expand the FDA’s collaborative efforts and update the educational materials developed for Phase 1.

“The FDA’s traditional regulatory activities for monitoring prescription drug promotion primarily rely on review of promotional pieces submitted to the agency by sponsoring drug companies, industry complaints and field surveillance at large medical conventions,” the federal agency said in a statement. “Although these efforts are effective, the agency has limited ability to monitor promotional activities that occur in private.”

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