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I wonder why Aptamil is the most promoted formula by HCPs?

(62 Posts)
NotReallyHereHunker Tue 24-Jul-07 15:51:39

Could it be the discounted dry cleaning?

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Miaou Tue 24-Jul-07 15:55:09

(what's a HCP?? [ignorant])

Miaou Tue 24-Jul-07 15:55:35

Oh duh - health care professional i presume [idiot]

NotReallyHereHunker Tue 24-Jul-07 15:56:50


I thought they weren't meant to take freebies from formula manufacturers?

oliveoil Tue 24-Jul-07 15:57:09

you are sounding a tad obsessed Hunker

NotReallyHereHunker Tue 24-Jul-07 15:59:44

Thanks for that, OO. Moved it all on nicely.

Miaou Tue 24-Jul-07 16:01:10

It rather smacks of bribery doesn't it?, particularly the discounts on the NT and Nutrition magazines, which are directly relevant to their work I would guess.

smallwhitecat Tue 24-Jul-07 16:03:27

Message withdrawn

NotReallyHereHunker Tue 24-Jul-07 16:04:19

<starts 17 related threads so OO can come and post "oh fgs" on each one>

tiktok Tue 24-Jul-07 16:14:16

Both doctors and other HCPs can accept this sort of thing - it's not illegal. It's against the WHO code, but not the law.

This US site tries to stem the tide with regard to pharmaceuticals; a lot of what they say applies here and to formula:

Malfoynomore Tue 24-Jul-07 16:16:07

lol at Hunkers "oo" comment...

anyway,to the OP, surely that is illegal? I remember in 2002 my HV saying that they weren't even allowed to use Mugs with Formula advertising, etc...and anywya, they were not allowed to take such things in the first place....

smallwhitecat Tue 24-Jul-07 16:16:53

Message withdrawn

NotReallyHereHunker Tue 24-Jul-07 16:17:41

Do they all have this sort of discount scheme, Tiktok?

They're bastards.

Malfoynomore Tue 24-Jul-07 16:18:44

And people believe that HCP's are unbiased, lol.....

tiktok Tue 24-Jul-07 16:32:44

Some PCTs have a 'no formula freebies' policy and I have heard of some having a pen amnesty - hand in your formula pens and get a breastfeeding one in exchange, sorta thing. There are some which would not permit a formula-belogo'd mug or similar.

But it is not illegal, and unless the PCT has a formal policy, all sorts of flim-flam can be gifted....I don't know if Milupa has more of it or not, Hunker, but they all do some sort of promotion direct to HCPs. There are educational grants, awards, travel vouchers and stuff like that.

They are always present at exhibitions at conferences - I don't object to them being there in some form or other, as I think HCPs should know when new products are launched, and the WHO code does not proscribe contact, for the purpose of information giving. But you should see the tat they give out. One year, SMA was handing out yellow plastic ducks. A lot of them give out chocolate. There are always free draws as well (free draw = give us your name and address so we can put you on the database).

FlossALump Tue 24-Jul-07 16:36:17

I have a drug brand name on my pens at work. Cause we accousted the rep man and he had about 6 nurses scrabbling at him for a free pen. I don't actually think that drug is any better than any of the other drugs. I just think that the rep should come more often!

Malfoynomore Tue 24-Jul-07 16:44:12

Floss, lol....I doubt though that, in the drug rep case and the free pen it means that you will advice their drug over any other one?

tiktok Tue 24-Jul-07 16:55:07

Floss...he's won, then. You enjoy him coming and remember him. He has a relationship with you. The actual short term effect on you vis a vis that particular drug is secondary. The bigger prize is that relationship.

'Relationship marketing' is a branch of marketing - google it if anyone wants to know more.

It's a long term strategy, designed to make customers loyal and to create a feeling of trust . It's very useful for formula manufacturers, who use it with mothers ('Carelines', 'Baby Clubs') and HCPs.

Nappy manufacturers use it as well.

FlossALump Tue 24-Jul-07 18:07:02

I don't really get to advice on the drugs our patients have. TBH we so rarely get to benefit from this type of marketing we try to make the most of it. In this instance the rep was dropping off some mugs for a consultant who had asked for them. He can afford his own mugs so we nabbed them too.

tiktok Tue 24-Jul-07 18:11:30

He's really won bigtime with you lot, then, I reckon, Floss.

ruddynorah Tue 24-Jul-07 18:40:43

flossalump, CAT me your address and i'll send you a free, plain mug. 50p from ikea. i have pens too. bic biros. about 5p each.

theUrbanDryad Tue 24-Jul-07 18:48:10

i've probably trotted this story out for you before, but i'll trot it out again.

my friend who is a HV had a pen from Aptamil, and she was visiting a young mother (about my age) who tentatively said, "I hope you don't mind, but I've stopped using your formula, and I've gone onto SMA instead, because XXXXX seems to keep it down better." because the HV had a pen with the Aptamil logo on, the lady thought she was endorsing it. which, in a way, she was.

bastard marketing companies. dh sort of works in marketing, and they're so insidious you wouldn't believe it.

bristols Tue 24-Jul-07 18:48:11

malfoynomore - unfortunately, that is exactly what happens. There are often various brand names for the same drug. Different companies making the same drug. By giving the doctor a pen/post it note pad/mousemat/mug, they ensure that their particular brand name stays uppermost in that doctors mind. This results in more perscribing of that drug. Docs are really supposed to use the generic name when prescribing (eg. 'Fluoxetine' rather than 'Prozac', but that doesn't happen often enough.

It is definitely covered in the NMC code of conduct regarding seeing and receiving 'gifts' from drug reps. It is definitely frowned upon.

theUrbanDryad Tue 24-Jul-07 18:55:05

my HV has a fluoxetine pen. i find it vaguely disturbing, especially when she tried to tell me i had PND, and that i should probably go onto AD's (despite the fact i've been on them all, and Fluoxetine was one of the worst!!)

what's worse - an HV having a fluoxetine pen, or an Aptamil pen??

moondog Tue 24-Jul-07 19:20:12

It's absolutely staggering isn't it,that it is official Dept. of Health policy to promote breastfeeding and yet they allow all this sort of immoral stuff to go on.

Our local Sure Start HV (and bfc) organises an annual breastfeeding study day every year at the local big hospital. One year,a paediatrician's secretary invited along a rep. from bloody SMA!!!!!

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