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Year : 2010  |  Volume : 42  |  Issue : 5  |  Page : 267-272

Evaluation of rationality of promotional drug literature using World Health Organization guidelines

1 Department of Pharmacology, LTMC, Sion, Mumbai, India
2 Department of Pharmacology, GMC, Nagpur, India
3 Department of Pharmacology, SVNGMC, Yavatmal, India

Correspondence Address:
Smita N Mali
Department of Pharmacology, LTMC, Sion, Mumbai
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/0253-7613.70020

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Objectives : The study was aimed to evaluate collected drug promotional brochures for accuracy, consistency, and validity of the information presented in it, using World Health Organization (WHO) criteria for ethical medicinal drug promotion. Drug promotional brochures were evaluated for the type of claims and pictorial content presented in it and for references cited in support of these claims. Material and Methods : This observational, cross-sectional study was conducted in the outpatient department of Government Medical College and Hospital, Nagpur, India. In addition to the fulfillment of "WHO criteria, 1988," we examined 513 promotional brochures for the type of claims and pictorial content presented in it and references quoted in support of claims to check their retrievability, type, and authenticity. Results : None of the promotional literature fulfilled all WHO criteria. Majority (92%) brochures claimed about the efficacy of product, and a few about safety (37.8%). Out of 1003 references given in support of various claims, 84.4% were from journals and only 28.5% were validly presented researches. Brochures presenting irrelevant pictures were 41.3%, whereas brief prescription information (BPI) of the promoted drug was given only by 8.8% brochures. Conclusion : Pharmaceutical industries did not follow the WHO guidelines while promoting their products, thus aiming to satisfying their commercial motive rather than fulfill the educational aspect of promotion.


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