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Direct-to-Customer Drug Advertising - Essay Example

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Drug advertising is banned in many countries because of the possible harmful consequences of the practice…
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Direct-to-Customer Drug Advertising
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Download file to see previous pages But United States of America allows direct-to-customer drug advertisement and some people appreciate this policy. In this paper categorical imperative will be used to solve this dilemma of drug advertisement. We will argue through Kant’s deontological approach that drug advertisement directed to the end users is not ethical. Why Direct-to-Customer Drug Advertising is unethical? Deontological ethics emphasize on the moral duties of a person irrespective of the consequences of an action (Stanford Encyclopedia, 1). An act, therefore, is ethical or good only if it is morally right. An act cannot be ethically justified only by the consequences it follows because wrong actions (like lying) can sometimes lead to good consequences. Therefore deontologists argue that rules or duties make an action ethical, and not the consequences of those actions. Drug advertisement is not morally right because it violates the moral rule that one should act in a way in which one wants to be treated. Drug advertisement is not something desirable for a person who has limited knowledge of medical sciences. I am simply arguing against customer directed drug advertisement because I would not want to expose myself to such advertisement that can harm my health. Drug advertisement will only have limited information and they will entice a person to take self medication. The moral principle that should guide our behavior tells us that drug advertisement should be banned irrespective of the good and bad consequences it has to offer.
Categorical imperative is a moral philosophy given by Immanuel Kant. Categorical imperative calls for behaving in a manner that would one be willing to make a general universal principle (Kant, 30). A person, according to Kant, should act according to his or her moral duties and should not take into account the possible consequences of an action. Ethical actions should be based on moral principles rather than ‘good’ consequences. Direct-to-customer drug advertisement is similar to lying in many ways. No one would like to be on the receiving end of lying therefore it can be termed as an unethical behavior. In advertisement no company can tell everything about a drug therefore there will be chances of misunderstanding. Most of the people are not familiar with the medical terms therefore they may perceive it differently. It will be similar to concealing and therefore cannot be termed as an ethical behavior. No matter what are the consequences of drug advertisement to consumers, the act itself is not moral therefore it cannot be allowed. It is also important to understand that drug marketing can hurt children considerably. The main principle of categorical imperative calls for acting in a way so as you, by will, allow that act to become universally applicable. No one would like their children to see drug advertisements at homes therefore it is not justified morally to legalize customer directed drug marketing. There are also people who argue that it is in the best interest of the society that customer directed drug advertisements should be allowed all over the world. Their arguments stem from the sheer need of the ordinary people who are not able to go to doctors. It will allow them to treat themselves in a better way and avoid high costs of doctors. The argument is of utilitarianist nature that argues maximum good for the majority of population (Bentham, Chapter 1). This argument does not strengthen the case of customer directed ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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