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Internet Marketing of Neuroproducts: New Practices and Healthcare Policy Challenges


Direct-to-consumer advertising (DTCA) of healthcare products refers to a variety of marketing practices based on a combination of information and promotion strategies directed at consumers through different media such as radio and television broadcasts, newspaper and magazine ads, and, more recently, through the Internet. The principal form of marketing used by the pharmaceutical industry is the distribution of free samples to physicians but DTCA is an increasing part of global promotional spending for prescription drugs. Latest estimates suggest that DTCA now represents an annual $3.2 billion enterprise for the U.S. pharmaceutical industry. Findings from the literature show that these substantial efforts are geared toward the newer pharmaceuticals for chronic conditions with huge market potentials. The lion's share is going to the 20 most prescribed pharmaceuticals.We thank the Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation (J.I.) for funding of this project and Dr. Patricia King for her support. Writing of this paper was supported by NIH/NINDS R01 #NS045831 (J.I.) and the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada (E.R.). We also acknowledge Dr. Pamela Schraedley-Desmond, Shilpa Gulati, Neil Mukhopadhyay, and Sarah Waldman.

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Cambridge Quarterly of Healthcare Ethics
  • ISSN: 0963-1801
  • EISSN: 1469-2147
  • URL: /core/journals/cambridge-quarterly-of-healthcare-ethics
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