September 12th, 2012
When Prescription Drugs Go OTC, Ads Talk Less of Harms: Study
By Jennifer Goodwin
When prescription drugs become available over-the-counter, advertisements for the medications are far less likely to tell consumers about the potential harms and side effects, new research finds.
The reason for it, experts say, likely has to do with which federal agency regulates the marketing materials for each type of drug. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) regulates ads for prescription drugs, while ads for over-the-counter drugs are regulated by the U.S. Federal Trade Commission (FTC).
The FTC has much less stringent standards than the FDA for what manufacturers have to reveal about products in their marketing materials, the researchers noted.