Publications (4)41.21 Total impact
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ABSTRACT: Pharmaceutical companies do not just promote drugs, they also promote illness. They do this by sponsoring or producing material for GPs, doctor's waiting rooms and others that alert the medical and lay community to the existence of 'new' conditions like social phobia, or 'under-diagnosed' ones, like dysthymia. Moncrieff described a systematic Public Relations (PR) operation promoting social anxiety disorder as a disease. The campaign was targeted both directly to the community and to the psychiatric profession (Moncrieff, 2004). A favoured means of promoting new illnesses is for drug companies to invest in consumer support groups. Medawar and Hardon claim that the National Alliance for the mentally ill received over 11 million U.S. dollars from 18 pharmaceutical companies between 1996 and mid 1999 (Medawar and Hardon, 2004). It is cost effective for drug companies to invest in such groups without any direct promotion of their product (or indeed of drug therapy). The support groups increase the number of patients who present to doctors with ready made diagnoses. One advantage for pharmaceutical companies in using these forms of promotion is that they do not need to make a direct connection between the illness and their product. This allows them to present what they are doing as community service. The reason that they do not need to link their products to this covert promotional material is that their detailers' orthodox promotional programmes, apparently independently, but often in a well organised way, have already 'educated' us doctors, so that we are ready and willing to prescribe for these disorders. Of course we doctors may collude with this process, by being too ready to redefine patients' dissatisfaction with their predicaments and/or unsatisfactory lives as depression. Giving patients antidepressants can be a way for us to avoid confronting their misery. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2012 APA, all rights reserved)10/2012;
Article: Does drug promotion adversely influence doctors' abilities to make the best decisions for patients?[show abstract] [hide abstract]
ABSTRACT: Aim: To increase awareness amongst psychiatrists and trainees of the effects of pharmaceutical promotion and to stimulate careful evaluation of the relationships between psychiatry and the pharmaceutical industry. Method: Key findings from the literature and from 20 years experience with the Medical Lobby for Appropriate Marketing are summarised. Results: The relationship between doctors and pharmaceutical companies is shown to be problematic in a way that might negatively impact on patient care. Conclusions: Patients may benefit if individual psychiatrists, and the profession as a whole, develop more healthy scepticism about the harm to benefit ratios of relationships with the pharmaceutical industry.08/2009; 9(2):95-99.
Article: The stain wars.The Lancet 12/2003; 362(9398):1855; discussion 1856. · 38.28 Impact Factor
Article: The journal and drug advertising.Australian and New Zealand Journal of Psychiatry 09/2003; 37(4):495; discussion 495. · 2.93 Impact Factor