Monday, June 27, 2011

New Facebook Policy for Pharma/Biotech

Pharma and biotech companies have had the option to enable or disable comments on their Facebook pages. However, Facebook recently changed its policy: 1) New Pharma/Biotech Facebook pages will have to keep comments open, 2) Existing Facebook pages with comments disabled have until August 15th to open their wall to comments.
Of course any company that puts themselves on Facebook or other social media forum is at risk of uncontrolled comments and public critism. However, one major concern unique to the biotech/pharma industry is the regulatory environment it plays in. In the US, the FDA requires reporting of all adverse events/effects. As it stands, even an unrelated, negative comment about a drug may be considered an adverse event/effect and may need to be reported.
I'm curious to see how biotech/pharma will respond to this new policy. Social media is here to stay and patients are looking for the opportunity to have an open dialogue. I hope to see biotech/pharma companies find a safe, appropriate way to be in this space and not run from it.

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