Medical Marketing in the United States: A Prescription for Reform
33 Pages Posted: 27 Jan 2011
To rein in overspending caused by medical marketing, Congress should pass stringent legislation banning the provision of gifts and free meals. This Note analyzes the scale and operation of medical marketing, proposes the Medical Marketing Act for Congress’s consideration, and defends it against legal attack. A comprehensive ban on the drug and device industries’ most troublesome marketing activities would lower spending on prescription drugs and medical devices by substantially reducing doctors’ tendencies to prescribe more expensive and unnecessary branded drugs and medical devices.
This Note begins, in Part I, by describing how medical marketing impacts doctors’ decisionmaking and how this shift affects drug and device spending. Part II examines the common shortcomings of the many medical marketing proposals put forth by industry organizations, state legislatures, and Congress. Part III responds to the most likely challenge to the Medical Marketing Act – the accusation that restrictions on medical marketing impermissibly curtail commercial speech in violation of the First Amendment. Finally, Part IV proposes the Medical Marketing Act for Congress’s consideration.
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