May 5, 2000

Group calls on Health Minister Allan Rock to halt prescription drug advertising on MuchMusic


"Advertising prescription medicines is illegal in Canada. Health Minister Allan Rock should tell MuchMusic it will face the maximum penalties under Canadian law if it proceeds with its plan to advertise Wyeth-Ayerst's Alesse," says Anne Rochon Ford a spokesperson for the Working Group on Women and Health Protection.

The Working Group on Women and Health Protection represents over 20 women's and consumers' groups across Canada including the Canadian Women's Health Network, DES Action Canada and the Women's Health Clinic in Winnipeg.

"The public should not be misled by the argument advertising is information and serves a public good," says Ford. "Advertising is not balanced information. Drug advertising is about selling a particular product. We fully support balanced information about birth control for teens. But it must be neutral and always combined with information about protection against sexually transmitted diseases."

"Drug advertising has huge implications. It fundamentally changes our health care model. It could lead to a huge escalation in health care costs," says Ford.

For more information, please contact:
Anne Rochon Ford (416) 482 6591
Barbara Mintzes (604) 822-0565


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