Chamber Fighting Ads that Warn Consumers About Dangerous Drugs
The U.S. Chamber of Commerce's Institute for Legal Reform (ILR) has mounted a campaign against attorney advertising that warns consumers about the dangerous and deadly side effects of defective drugs. The Chamber says it wants stricter regulation of law firm ads because it believes they put consumers in danger, but keep in mind that the Chamber represents the interests of the pharmaceutical companies. And the pharmaceutical companies do not want you to hear about the dangers of using their drugs or the legal recourse available to you if you are harmed by their defective products.
In an op-ed published in the Washington Post, ILR president Lisa Rickard says attorney advertising is scaring patients out of taking their medications. She tries to back that up by citing a recent report that found that at least 30 people had suffered serious medical harm, including two deaths, after they abruptly stopped taking Xarelto (rivaroxaban) without consulting their doctors after viewing attorney advertising.
Sounds bad until you consider this. More than 100 times that many people suffered serious medical problems as a result of taking (rivaroxaban) in 2014 alone. According to the Institute for Safe Medication Practices (ISMP) Quarter Watch 2014 Quarter 4 and Annual Report the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) received 3,331 reports of serious events involving Xarelto use, including 379 which resulted in death, just in that year.
Pretending to Protect Consumers
The Chamber wants the FDA, the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) and Congress to get involved and is hoping for tougher restrictions on attorney advertising that informs consumers of the potential side effects of drugs. It says that its concern is for the well-being of consumers.
But the Chamber’s ILR exists to protect corporations, including the pharmaceutical companies, from the consumers they have harmed. In fact, the IRL “has the sole mission of restricting the ability of individuals harmed by negligent corporations to access the civil justice system,” according to the American Association for Justice (AAJ) which goes on to explain the depths of the ILR’s hypocrisy.
Talking to Your Doctor
Of course you should talk to your doctor before discontinuing your medication over concerns about potential side effects. No one is disputing that. If you are experiencing symptoms of a serious adverse reaction, you should stop taking the medication and seek immediate medical attention, which means that you will be discontinuing your meds briefly while simultaneously consulting a doctor, usually in the emergency room, until it can be determined if the drug is the cause of your symptoms.
You should not be denied information about the potential side effects of your medication, including the side effects that the pharmaceutical companies have gone to great lengths to keep hidden. Nor should you be denied information about your legal rights if you have been harmed by a medication, just so the drug makers can avoid having to pay.
If you or someone you love has been harmed by a defective medication, you can learn more about your rights and how you can recover damages for your losses by searching our directory to find an experienced defective drug lawyer who can help you.