The PMCPA has received a number of complaints which have arisen from pharmaceutical companies using a third party to email promotional material to health professionals. It is an established principle under the Code that pharmaceutical companies are responsible for work undertaken by third parties on their behalf.
Clause 9.9 of the Code prohibits the use of email for promotional purposes unless with the prior permission of the recipient. Companies are thus reminded that if they use a third party to email promotional material it is essential that they scrutinise the wording of the agreement used to gain permission to send such material. The agreement should form part of the relevant job bag and must be such that health professionals were able to give fully informed consent. The wording must make it abundantly clear that agreement would result in the receipt of promotional emails. Lack of clarity in the wording is likely to lead to a breach of the Code.