Annexes submitted by the Advertising Standards Authority (HO44a)
Annex 1: Relevant Advertising Codes and Homeopathy
The Advertising Codes can be found in full on the
· 3.1 Before
distributing or submitting a marketing communication for publication, marketers
must hold documentary evidence to prove all claims, whether direct or implied,
that are capable of objective substantiation.
· 3.2 If there is a significant division of informed opinion about any claims made in a marketing communication they should not be portrayed as generally agreed.
· 7.1 No marketing communication should mislead, or be likely to mislead, by inaccuracy, ambiguity, exaggeration, omission or otherwise.
· 7.2 Marketing communications must not omit, hide or provide in an unclear, unintelligible, ambiguous or untimely manner material information if that omission or presentation is likely to affect consumers' decisions about whether and how to buy the advertised product, unless the information is obvious from the context. If the advertisement is limited by time or space, the ASA will take into account steps that the advertiser has taken to make that information available to consumers by other means.
50 Health and Beauty Products and Therapies
· 50.1 Medical and scientific claims made about beauty and health-related products should be backed by evidence, where appropriate consisting of trials conducted on people. Where relevant, the rules will also relate to claims for products for animals. Substantiation will be assessed by the ASA on the basis of the available scientific knowledge.
· 50.3 Marketers should not discourage essential treatment. They should not offer specific advice on, diagnosis of or treatment for serious or prolonged conditions unless it is conducted under the supervision of a doctor or other suitably qualified health professional (eg one subject to regulation by a statutory or recognised medical or health professional body). Accurate and responsible general information about such conditions may, however, be offered.
· 50.6 Marketers offering individual treatments, particularly those that are physically invasive, may be asked by the media and the ASA to provide full details together with information about those who will supervise and administer them. Where appropriate, practitioners should have relevant and recognised qualifications. Marketers should encourage consumers to take independent medical advice before committing themselves to significant treatments, including those that are physically invasive.
· 50.11 Medicines must have a marketing authorisation from the MHRA before they are marketed and any claims made for products must conform with the authorisation. Medicinal claims should not be made for unauthorised products. Marketing communications should refer to the MHRA, the authorisation or the EC only if required to do so by the MHRA.
· 50.19 Homeopathic medicinal products must be registered in the UK. Any product information given in the marketing communication should be confined to what appears on the label. Marketing communications should include a warning to consult a doctor if symptoms persist. Marketing communications for unauthorised products should not make any medicinal or therapeutic claims or refer to any ailment.
RADIO BCAP CODE
The Radio BCAP Code includes principles on substantiation and truthfulness,
similar to those in the non-broadcast
4.13 Homeopathic Medicinal Products
Advertisements for homeopathic medicines are acceptable, subject to all relevant requirements of EC Council Directive 2001/83/EC (as amended by 2004/27/EC) on medicinal products for human use implemented in the UK by the Medicines (Advertising) Regulations 1994 (as amended).
a) advertisements are only acceptable for products which have been registered in the UK;
b) product information must be confined to that which appears in Schedule 5 of the Medicines (Advertising) Regulations 1994.
Advertisements may not, therefore, include medicinal or therapeutic claims or refer to a particular ailment;
c) advertisements must include wording such as 'always read the label' or 'always read the leaflet' as appropriate.
TV BCAP CODE
The TV BCAP Code includes principles on substantiation and truthfulness,
similar to those in the non-broadcast
8.2.2 Homeopathic medicinal products
(a) Only homeopathic medicinal products which are registered in the UK may be advertised
(b) The only information which may be included is that which is allowed to appear on product labelling. Advertisements may not, therefore, include medicinal or therapeutic claims or refer to a particular ailment
Note to 8.2.2:
This rule incorporates the requirements of EC Directive 2001/83/EC (as amended by EC Directive 2004/27/EC) on Medicinal Products For Human Use.
Therapies - Homeopathy
This section should be read in conjunction with the entry on 'Therapies, General'.
Annex 3: Two Recent Rulings
Homeo Home - 25 March 2009
Monitoring staff viewed an ad in Bengali on Channel S for the Homeo Home homeopathic practice. The ad showed a sign for the homeopathic practice; it stated "Dr Chakresh Chakraborty, Homeopathic Consultant".
A man, referred to in on-screen text as "Dr Chakresh Chakraborty", was shown sitting at his desk with a stethoscope. The Bengali voice-over stated "Renowned homeopathic practitioner from Dhaka, Dr. Chakresh Chakraborty has been treating a lot of new and complex diseases for the last three decades ... for asthma, skin disease, sexual diseases, spondilitis, diabetes, hay fever, migraine, infertility, piles, mental stress and various other diseases ...
viewer, a medical doctor, challenged whether the implied claim that the
advertiser's herbal remedies could treat and cure medical conditions could be