Special FeaturesLast update October 8, 2019


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We have enhanced the Ask PAAB section to make it more user-friendly due to the growing number of questions. You can now select a category of interest from the drop down menu above to view existing question and answers or you can also do a search for questions that have been submitted to Ask PAAB since the beginning.

Most Recent Questions and Answers

Hello, I'm looking for where to find guidance regarding regulations for executing a 'help seeking' DTC campaign for vaccines at the same time as a branded DTC vaccine campaign. Given the DTC nature, pre-clearance would likely be through ASC. I've reviewed the guidance from Health Canada at length and am well aware of the criteria for help seeking. My understanding is that the help seeking and branded campaigns must be different (ie: in colour, tag lines etc) and not linked in any way, but I'm unable to find specific direction. I'd like to be more clear on how the campaigns must be different, assuming they are not linked in anyway (visually or otherwise), and if/how they may be executed concurrently. ie: can a vaccine help seeking TV ad be on during the same time a vaccines DTC branded banner ad or social media campaign is running (again, assuming not linked in any way). Thank you in advance for your assistance.

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Hi, I'm from the Arthritis Society. I have a company that is currently developing a product; in phase 2. They want to support/sponsor one of our tool in a field that is relevant to their upcoming indication. Content and material will be elaborate by the Society without any interference by the pharma company. Would that interfere with any regulation in Canada. If so, which one? Thanks Ken Gagnon

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If a representative during a social meal mentions to an HCP a reference to a slide that was viewed at another meeting to HCP's with regards to utilization rates of a genericized molecule, is this considered a violation?

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Can ongoing studies for a group of products (same therapeutic category) be discussed in a Corporate APS, or must this be done in individual branded APS? For example, a company has a portfolio of diabetes drugs that with ongoing research into weight loss indications, and would like to produce a single piece discussing all trials.

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We have an online newsletter where we post healthcare-related information, as well as society news pertaining to our association. Our member and supporter base primarily consists of hospital pharmacists as well as a small number of architects, students, and pharmaceutical companies. We can set-up advertising on the site to require a login to limit access by the general public. My concern is with the students who are not yet healthcare professionals, the pharmaceutical organizations, and the small number of architect members. Would their exposure to pharmaceutical advertising go against PAAB standards, even if we include a disclaimer that the advertisements are meant for healthcare professionals only? When we used to have a print journal that contained advertising for pharmaceutical products, the same individuals would have received copies of it. To my knowledge, this was not an issue in the past. However, we would appreciate some guidance to ensure we are being PAAB compliant, as online advertising is new to our association. Thank you kindly. 

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Can patient survey data from CADTH be used for an unbranded tool on current patient experience and behaviour?

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For Help-Seeking Announcements, the Distinction Between Advertising and Other Activities states "there is no implication that a drug is the sole treatment available". Does this mean no implication for a single brand within the context of available drug treatments, or no implication for drug treatment over non-drug treatment?

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For a product with two different administration formats (eg. syringe and pen), is it permissible to only advertise one format in APS (with no mention of the other device)?

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If Product-A is a combination of Drug-B and Drug-C, can the mechanism of action information from the Drug-B and Drug-C Product Monographs be used in Product-A advertising? The Product Monographs for combination products usually contain less information regarding their components (for brevity), however mechanisms of action should be identical regardless of formulation.

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Hi, For the balance copy requiring a direct link to the Product Monograph - the guidelines state that a link to the Health Canada database along with DIN number would work in lieu of a corporate URL. If going this route, is it sufficient to say: "Search the Health Canada Drug Product Database and search DIN XXX for...." OR must the database URL be written out? It is quite long: ( Much thanks!

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Deputy Commissioner  

Jennifer Carroll
Senior Reviewer Communications

To view the PAAB
Code of Advertising Acceptance
click here
Pharmaceutical Advertising
Advisory Board
Upcoming meeting

February 18, 2020

Future of technology in life sciences

Dinner Meeting
Cocktails: 5:30 p.m.
Dinner: 6:30 p.m.
Panel Discussion: 7:00 p.m.

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