HEALTH

J&J to ship children’s medicine amid House committee hearing

BY Allison Cerra

WASHINGTON Johnson & Johnson said Wednesday that it plans to ship limited quantities of one of its children’s medicines following a nationwide recall.

J&J CEO William Weldon said nearly 1 million bottles of the medicine — which he did not disclose — will be available for release next week. The drug maker met with the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform on Thursday to examine the circumstances surrounding J&J’s recall of more than 135 million bottles of infant and children’s medicines produced by Johnson & Johnson/McNeil Consumer Healthcare, including children’s Tylenol, infant’s Tylenol, children’s Motrin and children’s Benadryl.

On Sept. 16, J&J’s consumer group chair Colleen Goggins said she would retire from her post on March 1, 2011.

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FTC looks to debunk health benefit claims made by POM Wonderful in suit

BY Allison Cerra

WASHINGTON The Federal Trade Commission has sued the maker of a pomegranate juice that touts health benefit claims.

 

The FTC announced that it was suing POM Wonderful for its "deceptive advertising" on Monday. Federal regulators alleged that ads that ran in such publications as the New York Times, as well as Parade, Fitness and Prevention magazines, violated federal law by making deceptive disease prevention and treatment claims, including "clinical studies prove that POM Juice and POMx prevent, reduce the risk of and treat [heart disease, prostate cancer and erectile dysfunction]." The FTC complaint said that the claims are false because the company either:

  • Conducted scientific studies that did not show heart disease benefit from use of its products;
  • The study POM Wonderful relied on was neither “blinded” nor controlled (to merit prostate cancer claims); or
  • The study on which the company relied (for erectile dysfunction claims) did not show that POM Juice was any more effective than a placebo.

 

 

“Any consumer who sees POM Wonderful products as a silver bullet against disease has been misled,” said David Vladeck, director of the FTC’s Bureau of Consumer Protection.  “When a company touts scientific research in its advertising, the research must squarely support the claims made. Contrary to POM Wonderful’s advertising, the available scientific information does not prove that POM Juice or POMx effectively treats or prevents these illnesses.”

 

The FTC issues an administrative complaint when it has reason to believe that the law has been or is being violated, and it appears to the commission that a proceeding is in the public interest, the government agency noted.

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Carol Abel joins FMI as VP education and research

BY Allison Cerra

ARLINGTON, Va. A former executive at the American Pharmacists Association has joined the Food Marketing Institute to develop and execute the organization’s education programs and research initiatives.

Carol Abel was named FMI’s VP education and research. Abel comes to FMI from the American Pharmacists Association where she most recently served as senior director of education strategy and compliance officer. She was responsible for the association’s pharmacy accreditation program, continuing education best practices, standards and new initiatives. She also served as director of education for the association.

“As provided in the new FMI strategic plan approved earlier this year by the board of directors, we are laser-focused on enhancing our industry education programming and expanding opportunities in leadership development for those who work in our member companies,” said FMI president and CEO Leslie Sarasin. “Carol has an impressive background and extensive expertise, and her previous success in identifying innovative educational strategies makes her a welcome addition to the FMI team.”

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