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National opposes ban on direct-to-consumer ads

Hon Tony Ryall
National Party Health Spokesman

5 October 2006

National opposes ban on direct-to-consumer advertising

National opposes the Government's rumoured ban on direct-to-consumer advertising of pharmaceuticals, says National’s Health spokesman, Tony Ryall.

He is commenting on media reports that the Government will make an announcement within weeks to ban direct-to-consumer advertising of pharmaceuticals.

A ban could threaten the viability of the pharmaceutical industry in New Zealand, make sponsorship of events by drug companies illegal, and see a decline in industry-funded research.

"This is another example of nanny state ‘Labour-knows-best’,” says Mr Ryall.

"Consumers have a right to know that these pharmaceuticals are available, and can be accessed. Surely we want a health system where people can make choices and play a role in their own healthcare.

"And research has shown that while people like to know these drugs are available, they would also like more information about the risks and benefits of advertised drugs.

“That is a message the pharmaceutical advertisers should take on board,"says Mr Ryall.


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