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The Public Health Impact of Direct-To-Consumer Advertising of Prescription Drugs

This report explores the public health impact of direct-to-consumer advertising based on a nationally representative sample of adults who discussed advertised drugs with their physicians. The report departed from an existing body of research, which evaluates attitudes and opinions, and instead examined actual healthcare experiences and outcomes. The research found that DTC prompted discussion between patients and their physicians, and prompted additional care by their physicians, including ordering new prescriptions. However, fewer than half of new prescriptions were for the drug that was advertised.

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