New FDA ReleaseI'm now pleased to report back to you all that after five years last week the American Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has now formally released two key guidelines that will control how both pharmaceutical and medical device companies will need engage with the market utilising social media.
The Two New Areas1. Instructions on how companies go about correcting any erroneous product information on any digital platform controlled by third parties.
2. The way in which both the positive and negative aspects of a product are to be presented whereby the key risk or potential hazard along with the key benefit are presented in an open digital forum which can be any form of website, networking platform, blog or discussion forum as possible examples.
The FDA has spoken directly about the fact that these guidelines were developed whilst working in conjunction with pharmaceutical industry representation as well as that from other key stakeholders.
In the case of prominent third-party websites such as Wikipedia, companies when correcting errors that have been made in ddesribing a device or medication must be done so in a balanced way and always validated with a source from which the information is given such as the official product information for the product or a reference from a key clinical study.
Specifically the revised text would be placed along side the flawed text and would be included purely as a means of correcting a previous mistake and in no way to promote the brand in question.
The FDA guidelines go on to say that when any proprietary firm finds any mistake in content, they should immediately contact the website, blog or form to provide the correct information so that the misinformation can be quickly and completely addressed to provide accurate information.
In the absence of these formal guidelines before now, many companies have understandably been somewhat reserved and have been less than fully engaged within the digital space, however with this much needed and somewhat overdue arrival of rules, would be now in a much better position to proactively leverage this powerful promotional tool to above all else, provide more accurate and meaningful information to the market and by extension better customer service.
Currently this release is being used by the FDA as a starting point for on going discussion and as needed the basis for further discussion, review and change. Naturally as any new information is released, the Road Scholars Marketing Blog will present a full evaluation and review.
So until next time, good luck, (good health) and good marketing.