According to the 2nd statement of the 1973 American Hospital Association’s Patient Bill of Rights: The patient has the right to obtain from his physician complete current information concerning his diagnosis, treatment, and prognosis in terms the patient can be reasonably expected to understand. Reading further into the Patient’s Bill of Rights, we find that under the 3rd statement pertaining to treatment information and disclosure: The patient has the right to receive from his physician information necessary to give informed consent prior to the start of any procedure and / or treatment.
Keeping these patient rights in mind, I would rather agree that it is important for the drug manufacturers to advertise both the over-the-counter and prescription drugs in all forms of print and audiovisual media. It is because of the advertising placements that the patients learn of various available drugs in reference to varied illnesses and become familiar with the treatments the doctors may decide to undertake in respect to their treatment. Through the advertising of various prescription and over the counter medications, patients are able to take an active participation in their healing process.The information gained from the advertisements allows them to ask relevant questions of their doctors and put across any treatment clarifications or apprehensions prior to the start of the treatment.
But, because a little information is a dangerous thing, allowing the patient to be educated by the commercials also means that the doctors will be kept on their toes and their knowledge kept current. They don’t want their patient to put them into a corner about a drug that has been advertised that they do not know about right?Or worse, not be able to answer a patient question about and adverse reactions or contra indications about a drug. The manufacturers may be viewed as pushing their product unto consumers with their advertising by some sectors. I view it as the company keeping up their end of the bargain when it comes to patient rights.
They keep the patient and future patients informed of the various treatment choices available to them. That cannot be something good only for the drug manufacturing company is it?