Patients Diagnosed With Cancer for 1 to 2 Years Are More Alert to Healthcare Ads

November 25, 2018
The Center for Biosimilars Staff

Nielsen, a global measurement and data analytics company, recently revealed that direct-to-consumer healthcare advertising has reached 75% of US cancer survivors on television.

Nielsen, a global measurement and data analytics company, recently revealed that direct-to-consumer (DTC) healthcare advertising has reached 75% of US cancer survivors on television.

“Survivors will look to many sources to increase their knowledge about the disease, become more informed about treatment options and learn about ways to reduce future risk of recurrence,” according to Neilsen. The report also states that the sources individuals value most are linked with how long they have had their diagnoses.

Those who have been diagnosed for 1 to 2 years are more alert to healthcare advertising, according to Nielsen, than average cancer survivors. This group is 28% more likely than the average survivor to report having seen advertising at a pharmacy, 23% more likely to report having seen ads on the internet, and 15% more likely to report having seen ads in direct mail. They are also 35% more likely to value information that they read in newspaper advertising than in other media.

Nielsen also indicates that this group of survivors is more likely than the average cancer survivor to ask their physicians to prescribe a specific drug as a result of having seen healthcare advertising.

Such numbers are of particular interest given the Trump administration’s push to require DTC television advertisements for drugs to contain drug pricing information. The proposal, which is part of the administration’s focus on curbing the increasing price of drugs, has been met with resistance from drug makers; According to Stephen Ubl, president and CEO of the trade group Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers of America, disclosing the list price in TV advertisements may discourage patients from seeking needed medical care. Ubl also noted that if a requirement was implemented to disclose such information it would “raise significant legal issues, including First Amendment concerns.”