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Dr. Elliott On Pharmaceutical Propaganda

Posted in Pharmaceutical Advertising

I’ve had the opportunity to email Dr. Elliott several times since interviewing him and he’s just an all-around good guy.  That sentiment was amplified today when I saw this column on CNN:

(CNN) — If you want to understand the way prescription drugs are marketed today, have a look at the 1928 book, "Propaganda," by Edward Bernays, the father of public relations in America.

For Bernays, the public relations business was less about selling things than about creating the conditions for things to sell themselves. When Bernays was working as a salesman for Mozart pianos, for example, he did not simply place advertisements for pianos in newspapers. That would have been too obvious.

Source: How to brand a disease — and sell a cure – CNN.com

Just as some believe the worst thing that happened to the legal profession was lawyer advertising, I believe the worst thing that happened to the medical profession is pharmaceutical advertising.  While I don’t know if Dr. Elliott feels that way, you can tell by reading his post that he is not a fan of the way in which pharmaceutical companies hype diseases.