No Pharmaceutical Samples or Advertising In Our Office!
I have decided NOT to have pharmaceutical company samples or any “free” items advertising their products or services in my office!
I feel physicians need to be educated about new products available to improve our patients lives, and that company salespeople do their jobs well, but the other items that go along with this are purely unnecessary and increase the cost of medications to you:
The “free” pens, calendars, clocks, lunches, dinners, trips, and other incentives do NOT help educate us, but merely increase medication costs enormously. If you don’t think so, just look up the advertising budgets of the major pharmaceutical companies.
Think BILLIONS OF DOLLARS spent on advertising and samples!
This money, used to induce physicians to use their products, and to advertise products directly to you as a consumer, raises the cost of the many new beneficial medications developed to enormous levels. I’m sure you know a family member, a friend, or a neighbor who is having trouble paying for their medications or found out that Medicare Part D isn’t all that great – this is a big part of the reason why I’ve chosen to say “No Thanks”!
What are they giving away to seduce us:
- Advertising “Gimmicks” – Pens, Paper Pads, Tissues, Calendars, Clocks, Medical Instruments, and more!!
- Lunches or snacks for the entire office staff often costing hundreds of dollars per physician office per day – done everywhere in the country on any given weekday!
- Free Dinners for physicians – often costing thousands of dollars – again done all over the country on any given Lunchtime or evening!
- Speaker’s Fees – Often a local “expert” is paid to give a talk on a medication under the guise of “educating” their peers at a free dinner or luncheon. These fees range anywhere from 100’s to 1000’s of dollars for a single talk, plus transportation, lodging, and incidental expenses!! This is pure advertising!
- “Educational” Trips and Speaker “Training” Programs (training for the above dinners and meetings) – Held in very nice resort locations like Florida or Hawaii and include transportation, meals, lodging, and often spending allowances for “incidentals”. Again 1000’s of dollars spent per physician attendee all over the country!!
Could elimination of these “goodies” help lower drug costs???? Think about it for about 2 seconds and then you be the judge.
I will be the first to admit that I have taken advertising gimmicks and partaken of meals at educational meetings in the past, but as I have more people struggling to pay for their medications on a daily basis, I have decided to take a stand and say “No Thanks”.
I hope my decision on not having samples of medications to hand out makes more sense to you now – please join me and the other physicians in the country who have taken a stand on this – and help make a difference! Pass this information along to other physicians you may see for your care – encourage them to take a stand and make a difference as well!