DDMAC Reorganized into Office of Prescription Drug Promotion

Sept. 19, 2011 – Center for Drug Evaluation and Research (CDER) Director Janet Woodcock announced in an e-mail to CDER staff that as part of the reorganization of the Office of Medical Policy (OMP) into a Super Office, the former Division of Drug Marketing, Advertising and Communications has been reorganized and elevated into a new Office of Prescription Drug Promotion (OPDP), which divides promotional oversight into two divisions, one for professional promotion and one for direct-to-consumer (DTC) promotion.

“This reorganization will leverage OPDP’s resources and processes to provide for the highly effective oversight of prescription drug promotion,” Woodcock states.

“Maybe this is a good omen,” remarked John Kamp, executive director, Coalition for Healthcare Communication. “It took 18 months to get this reorganization approved. Let”s hope that the Internet and Social Media rules show up soon.”

The new OPDP, still under the direction of Thomas Abrams, consists of an Immediate Office, the Division of Professional Promotion (DPP), and the Division of Direct-to-Consumer Promotion (DDTCP). The new structure “will help prevent misleading promotion about prescription drugs and enhance the quality of communications about prescription drugs and other health information developed by companies,” according to Woodcock.

Leadership of the OPDP also includes:

  • Mark Askine, Associate Director, Office of Prescription Drug Promotion
  • Marci Kiester, Associate Director of Operations, Office of Prescription Drug Promotion
  • Catherine Gray, Acting Director, Division of Professional Promotion
  • Robert Dean, Acting Director, Division of DTC Promotion

The Office of Medical Policy also encompasses the Office of Medical Policy Initiatives, led by Rachel Sherman and her Deputy, Kathleen Uhl. Janet Norden is Associate Director for Regulatory Affairs. OMP plays a critical role in directing medical policy programs and strategic initiatives.

Enter CHC Contest for New OPDP Nickname

The Coalition for Healthcare Communication (CHC) will award autographed copies of both volumes of the great coffee table book, Medicine Avenue: The Story of Medical Advertising in America to the best new nickname for the FDA OPDP. Enter today by commenting below. Entries will be judged and announced by the Executive Committee of CHC.  More details will be announced soon.

The first volume of Medicine Ave was published in 1990 by the Medical Advertising Hall of Fame.  Medicine Ave 2  chronicles the history of the industry from 1990 through the present.   In addition to featuring hundreds of examples of the best work since 1990, the publication covers the evolution of the modern agency in terms of creativity, structure, and client relationships, and further details the legal and governmental framework that has shaped the industry, the evolution of the science, the globalization of medical advertising, mergers and acquisitions, the impact of digital communications, the rise of DTC advertising, the impact of technology, and the changing role of medical publishing.

More than a dozen industry experts contributed to the publication, lead by a

publications committee composed of legendary agency CEOs Ron Pantello (Lally, McFarland, Pantello), John Kallir (Kallir, Phillips, Ross), and Harry Sweeney (Dorland, Sweeney, Jones) and Euro RSCG creative head Julien Jarreau. The work of dozens of leading healthcare advertising agencies is shown to illustrate the caliber and diversity of the industry’s work.

Be nice, now.  Have fun, but be good.  😉

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