Deontological Advertising Summary

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Deontological Study of Direct-to-Consumer Pharmaceutical Advertising

May 10, 2001, a semi-truck rolls down Interstate 71 carrying a load of steel headed for Detroit. The driver, a 49 year old healthy man with a touch of arthritis, drinks his tea and listens to the radio and he rumbles down the highway. Shifting gears ca be hard on a man with arthritis in the knees, so his physician prescribed the well-advertised drug Vioxx. Phil had seen Dorothy Hamill advertise the drug on television, and the side effects they advertised didn’t seem to be a huge risk, so the drug must be safe, right? Wrong. What Phil was unaware of, was the fact that the company advertising the drug withheld the adverse cardiovascular side effects from the advertising.
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It states that “an action is considered morally good because of some characteristic of the action itself, not because of the product of the action is good”. (Britannica) To determine this I ask three questions. Question one, are drug companies treating consumers beneficially and doing no harm? Question two, are they treating the consumers fairly and justly? And question three, are they giving the consumer enough information to make an intelligent informed decision with regards to the products they sell? The answer to all three questions is an unequivocal no, making direct-to-consumer advertising of pharmaceutical drugs …show more content…
The drug Zoloft is one of the most direct-to-consumer advertised drugs today. The ads list symptoms of depression, symptoms that everyone suffers from every once in a while, no one is happy every day of their lives. However, the ads lead the consumer to believe they need to be happy every day and this pill can make that happen. Who among us doesn’t want to be happy, therefore the ad leads people to go to their doctor and list the symptoms they were given on the ad and ask for the drug. There is no benefit to the consumer in making them believe they have an issue they do to possess. Pharmaceutical drugs carry side effects that can be very harmful, some leading to death. Hence the need for a physician prescription to obtain the medications. Pharmaceuticals can react with other medications, including those considered safe and sold over the counter. By pushing the consumer to ask their physician for their drug, an older, tested, safer drug may not be utilized if a medication is truly called for. The only benefit of direct-to-consumer advertising is to that of the huge drug manufacturing companies, companies that are a multi-billion dollar industry, not to the consumer. It is harmful to the consumer to lead healthy people to believe they are sick, harmful mentally and

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