SENATE LEGISLATION TARGETS DRUG ADS

Proposal Seeks to Balance Marketing Spending With Research Costs

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WASHINGTON (AdAge.com) -- As expected, legislation was proposed in the Senate today to block drug companies from deducting marketing expenses for direct-to-consumer advertising that exceed research costs.

The proposal is seen as a way to ensure drug manufacturers spend at least as much researching drugs as advertising them.

The legislation was

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presented by Sen. Debbie Stabenow, D-Mich., who was joined by other leading Democrats ion the Senate including Senate Majority Leader Tom Daschle, D-S.D.

Sen. Stabenow said because pharmaceutical companies claim that increased research and development costs rather than increased advertising are fueling drug cost increases, the legislation just makes sure that they keep spending for research.

The proposal "will lower taxpayer subsidies while encouraging pharmaceutical companies to dedicate greater resources to research and development," she said.

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