Pharma Blogs Face Unique Challenges
By Earl Whipple
We are presented with some unique challenges when it comes to mentioning specific products or disease states on our blog, but despite the critical headline, it’s also wrong for anyone to assume that this is how we want things to be. We believe it is critical for patients and doctors to have accurate information about AstraZeneca medicines. That’s why our corporate website www.astrazeneca-us.com provides a wealth of information about our products. We’ve also provided the number for our information center (1-800-236-9933) in our blog comments policy. Anyone with questions about our medicines can call this number and get answers immediately. We believe that questions about products deserve fast answers, from live people, and we are happy to offer this service.
Can more be done to help provide accurate, balanced and timely information about our products, especially through social media channels? Yes, of course. But what the PharmaExec blog post labels as “close corporate scrutiny,” I see as responsibility. While adding any extra level of “scrutiny” to the comments we receive may mean it will take longer for us to respond to a comment, this is how we will operate for now.
On my October 19th blog I wrote about the Food & Drug Administration (FDA) holding a public forum to discuss the role of the Internet and social media tools. We applaud this decision and look forward to their engagement. In the meantime, we hope our early steps into social media will lead to more meaningful and helpful conversations with those who care about our company and the medicines we make.