Drug Companies Profit from Deceptive Ads

"Some companies have repeatedly
disseminated misleading advertisements for prescription
drugs, even after being cited for violations, and millions
of people see the deceptive commercials before the
government tries to halt them, Congressional investigators
said today. The investigators, from the General Accounting Office, said
Pfizer, for example, had continued to make misleading
claims in advertisements for its cholesterol-lowering drug
Lipitor, despite several letters from the Food and Drug
Administration in the last four years. In a new report, the accounting office said that drug
company advertising appeared to produce a significant
increase in the use of prescription drugs, as well as
higher drug spending. The report criticized delays in the
enforcement of federal standards for the accuracy of drug
advertising and attributed much of the delay to a recent
change in procedure by the Bush administration that
lengthens the review process."