Pharma-Sponsored Medical Ghostwriting What the Ghosts Have to Say About It

Ghost WriterThe New York Times, Wall Street Journal, and the Journal of the American Medical Association, all recently have come out with stories and studies suggesting that pharma-sponsored medical ghostwriting is rampant. “These seemingly objective articles,” says the WSJ, “which doctors around the world use to guide their care of patients, are often part of a marketing campaign by companies to promote a product or play up the condition it treats.”

Pharma Marketing News surveyed readers to determine if medical journal articles sponsored and ghostwritten by drug companies are a legitimate part of marketing to physicians and to get opinions on various other issues raised in the press about ghostwriting.

One of the first things learned was that it is not easy to even define what is meant by “ghostwriting!”

This article presents results from the survey. Nearly 40% of the respondents were medical writers (including “ghosts”) who made clear their opinions regarding the issue.

Topic headings include:

  • How Rampant is Pharma-Sponsored Ghostwriting?
  • Pharma’s New Marketing Partner: Medical Journals
  • Defining Ghostwriting
  • Survey Results
  • Do Physicians Care?

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Issue: Vol. 8, No. 8: September 2009
Word Count: 4695

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