Miller JE. Bioethical accreditation or rating needed to restore trust in pharma Nature Medicine 19, 261 (2013) doi:10.1038/nm0313-261.
“After years of decline in the public eye, drug companies should implment a bioethics accreditation or rating program to help appropriately restore the industry’s good name and improve its effectiveness in advancing global health and new treatments.
The pharmaceutical industry was once among the most admired industries on the planet. Today, it is heavily criticized and distrusted, with only 12% of people in the US believing that drug companies are generally honest and ethical, according to a Harris poll published late last year. Countless experts have raised this problem before, and drug companies have attempted numerous remedial strategies to address bioethical concerns and repair trust deficits. Nonetheless, the mistrust persists, arguably weakening the effectiveness of these important institutions. Is there something new that companies can do to demonstrate the quality of their processes and genuinely earn back our trust? I believe there is…………..”
“This article is very timely and couldn’t have popped into my consciousness at a more opportune time. At the AAN, in San Diego, I boycotted the exhibition hall; I simply find the waste of money on very expensive glitzy marketing stands distressing. I have posted on the issue of the exhibitionism by the marketing arm of Pharma before, using the Red Queen Effect as the analogy.”
“Unfortunately, the marketeers took things to a new level in San Diego; you couldn’t walk around San Diego without being reminded that MS Pharma was in town. They were determined to get their subliminal messages across. The pedicabs or pedal taxis were branded with a particular MS drug throughout the meeting. My colleagues and I were horrified that a Pharmaceutical company would treat a MS Drug like a consumer product and advertise it on taxis. Do they think we, neurologists, are morons and respond to billboard advertising as if MS DMTs were the equivalent to Coca Cola? It is time the Pharma industry took their marketing seriously and displayed some social responsibility. MS is a serious disease and MS DMTs are simply overpriced, particularly in the USA. Neurologists are not muppets and we should not be treated as such. Pharma should use their marketing budgets wisely; their marketing needs to be innovative and more importantly add value to the field. The MS market is not a consumer market and should not be treated as such. The marketing and advertising executives who came up with the idea of advertising a very expensive MS drug on taxis should find jobs in another sector!”