Direct-to-consumer drug advertising, always controversial, looks set to become a battleground yet again.
Earlier this month, the Trump administration unveiled its plan to force drugmakers to disclose prices in TV ads. The move is likely to spark a confrontation between government and pharma, experts predict, and renew constitutional debate over commercial speech.
Drugmakers, meanwhile, continue to spend billions of dollars to advertise their medicines on TV. The products featured, though, have changed.
Patent expirations have retired ads for former blockbusters like Lipitor and Viagra. In their place are TV spots for specialty medicines like biologics and cancer drugs — raising new controversies over cost and ethics.
Below are five stories that dive deeper into these issues. They explain some of the solutions being proposed by drugmakers and marketers, as well as DTC advertising questions yet to have answers.
Viagra no more: The changing face of drug ads on TV
Gone are twin bathtubs and little blue pills. Instead, pharma promotions on TV are more likely to feature complex biologics and cancer drugs. Read More »
First Amendment takes center stage in DTC price fight
A string of court decisions have bolstered commercial speech rights for industry. The Trump administration's push to require prices in TV ads could become the next legal battleground. Read More »
5 questions on the Trump admin's bid to mandate prices in drug ads
Pharma, which spends billions each year to advertise its products on television, is expected to fiercely oppose the proposal. Read More »
Oncology boom spurs DTC advertising, and with it controversy
As the debate for and against direct-to-consumer advertising rages on, cancer drugmakers look poised to pump massive amounts of money into the practice. Read More »
Pharma advertising in 2018: TV, midterms and specialty drugs
Magna Global expects 2018 to be a banner year for advertising spend, with pharma being one of the largest contributors. Read More »