Does drug promotion adversely influence doctors’ abilities to make the best decisions for patients?


Correspondence: Dr Jon Jureidini, Department of Psychological Medicine, Women’s and Children’s Hospital, North Adelaide, SA 5006, Australia. Fax: (08) 8204 7032 Email:


Aim: To increase awareness amongst psychiatrists and trainees of the effects of pharmaceutical promotion and to stimulate careful evaluation of the relationships between psychiatry and the pharmaceutical industry.

Method: Key findings from the literature and from 20 years experience with the Medical Lobby for Appropriate Marketing are summarised.

Results: The relationship between doctors and pharmaceutical companies is shown to be problematic in a way that might negatively impact on patient care.

Conclusions: Patients may benefit if individual psychiatrists, and the profession as a whole, develop more healthy scepticism about the harm to benefit ratios of relationships with the pharmaceutical industry.