** Please comment your title (physician, patient, nurse, etc) when you sign **
Direct-to-Consumer Advertisements are targeted to the general population of patients. The Food and Drug Administration oversees the regulations set by the Federal Food Drug and Cosmetic Act. However, the regulations are lenient and advertisements often are misinterpreted by patients. In fact, both consumers and physicians surveyed agreed that the advertisements focus more on benefits than they do on risks associated with the medication. Also, doctors often feel pressured to prescribe medications that may be inappropriate for the patient. 69% of inappropriate requests were actually approved by physicians. Without DTCA, prescribers could make recommendations to patients on an individual basis based on their medical history. This could only improve quality of patient care. The costs associated with advertising for drugs have been increasing with increased utilization of DTCA. There has been a 60% increase in advertising costs over the past 4 year. In 2012 alone, $3 billion was spent on DTCA. Without DTCA drug prices would decrease because companies would no longer have to recuperate the money spent on advertising. Therefore, banning DTCA would improve the quality of patient care while also decreasing drug prices.
Banning DTCA would not stop physicians from obtaining information about new drugs. They have other means such as healthcare organizations and journals where they can find more comprehensive drug information. Therefore, patient's would still have access to the best medication possible for their individual situation.
We will be bringing this petition to members of the legislature to speak to them about this issue. Thank you for your support.