March 24, 2008
Taking effect in June, manufacturers of prescription drugs that treat kidney disease, sexual impotence or prostate conditions will have a new opportunity in Canada to run professional advertisements in medical journals that make preventive, curative or treatment claims. According to the Canadian Food and Drugs Act, the drugs for these diseases will be allowed to be marketed directly to physicians because the diseases they treat will be removed from Canada's list of Scheule A conditions.
Before the new rule takes effect, manufacturers may not advertise drugs for these diseases to anyone, says Eileen McMahon. Other preventative claims may be advertised to the general public for vaccines, OTC drugs and dietary supplements for all Schedule A conditions, which include venereal diseases and cancer. The new rule will likely benefit drugmakers that treat major therapeutic categories such as Pfizer’s Viagra (sildenafil citrate) and GlaxoSmithKline’s Avodart (dutasteride).