Advertising of pharmaceuticals, case GIF-P-R-450/147-3/ZW/09/10

April 28th, 2010, Tomasz Rychlicki

The Main Pharmaceutical Inspector (MPI) questioned the legality of a few ads that were aired on different TV channels. See for instance the decision of the the Main Pharmaceutical Inspector of 4 March 2010, no. GIF-P-R-450/147-3/ZW/09/10, with regard to indication of a sponsor in “The producer of Guajazyl – cough syrup, invites to a forecast” (in Polish “Na prognozę pogody zaprasza producent Guajazylu – wykrztuśnego syropu na kaszel”), the decision of the the Main Pharmaceutical Inspector of 10 March 2010, no. GIF-P-R-450/141-4/ZW/09/10, with regard to indication of a sponsor in “The producer of Pectosol – herbal preparation on cough, invites to a program” (in Polish: “Na program zaprasza producent Pectosolu – ziołowego preparatu na kaszel”), the decision of the the Main Pharmaceutical Inspector of 6 January 2010, no GIF-P-R-450/126-3/ZW/09/10, with regard to indication of a sponsor in “The producer of DEXAPINI invites to a forecast. DEXAPINI – goodnight without a cough” (in Polish: “Na prognozę pogody zaprasza producent syropu DEXAPINI. DEXAPINI – dobranoc bez kaszlu”).

According to the provisions of Article 17(1) of the Polish Act of 29 December 1992 on Broadcasting – LOB – (in Polish: Ustawa o radiofonii i telewizji), published in Journal of Law (Dziennik Ustaw) of 1993, No 7 item 34, consolidated text of 19 Novemver 2004, Journal of Laws (Dziennik Ustaw) No 253 item 2531, with subsequent amendments, sponsored programmes or other broadcasts shall be identified as such by sponsor credits at their beginning or end. Such credits may specify only the sponsor’s name, business name, trademark or contain some other identification of the business operator or its business activities, the image of a single product or service. According to article 4 pt. 7 of the LOB, the “sponsorship” shall mean a direct or indirect financing or co-financing of the production or transmission of a programme or other broadcasts by an entity other than the broadcaster or producer of the programme, with a view to establishing, enhancing or promoting the renown of the name, business name, product or service, trademark. The MPI held that publishing of information relating to the product, not the manufacturer’s is basically beyond the scope of sponsorship. The MPI ruled that these sponsorship spots were illegal advertising of the medicinal products.

See also “Polish regulations on pharmaceutical trade marks” and “Polish case law on advertising of pharmaceuticals“.