QUALITY OF DRUG
ADVERTISEMENTS FOLLOWING DEREGULATION OF MASS MEDIA IN INDONESIA
The quality of drug advertisements (ads) in various media in
concern in the last decade. Studies reported that information about drug in
advertisement was either not objective, incomplete, or misleading. Ironically, drug advertisement is usually the
main source of information received in general public as objective and unbiased
source of information about drug for general public is scarce.
Since 1998, there has been a major change in the
social politics in Indonesia including the elimination of ministry of
information which previously controlled the mass media, which in turn,
stimulated the increasing number of media. Accordingly, number of ads also
growth rapidly, including drug ads. Therefore, it is important to observe the
quality of information in drug advertisement after the deregulation.
Objective: To evaluate the quality
of information in drug ads in various mass media, including TV, radio,
magazines, newspaper, and billboard using the criteria in the WHO-Ethical
criteria of medicinal drug promotion (WHO-EC).
Design: descriptive-analytical.Setting and population: Observation on drug
advertisement in media was conducted in 1996 (phase I) and 2003 (phase II), during
which 317 ads were observed in phase I and 1451 ads were observed in phase II.
Ads were observed from 2 TV channels in 2 days broadcast, 2 radio stations in 2
day broadcast, 1 daily newspaper for one month, 2 monthly magazine for a year,
billboards in main streets and displays in 50 pharmacies. Awareness of the
regulatory authority and availability of law, regulation, and monitoring system
concerning drug ads was observed by conducting interview with key persons in
National Agency of Drug and Food control (NA-DFC)
Outcome measure: % of drug advertisements
mentioning generic name, indications, contraindications, manufacturer/distributor’s
name. Availability of legal document on drug promotion.
Result: Result in phase I
showed that 26% of drug ads mentioned generic name compared to 36% in phase II.
Indication was mentioned in 52% drug ads in phase I, compared to 93.3% in phase II. Contraindication was
mentioned in 2.6% drug ads in phase I, while in phase II it was 36.5%.
Manufacturer’s name was mentioned in 56% drug ads in phase I compared to 82.4%
in phase II. Drug regulation in Indonesia has covered drug promotion including
drug ads with MOH decree 386/1994. During 2001, 675 cases of promotional violation has been
reported to NA-DFC, and 139 cases categorized as breaching the law.
Conclusion: Despite the growing
number of media and drug ads, it is concluded that the quality of information
in drug ads was better in phase II of the study.
this study has been presented in the second International Conference on Improving Use of Medicine, Chiangmai, in 2004. The photos are here.