1.4 Audiences & Types of Communications Covered by the Code

A. PAAB Services cover promotional communications regarding Health Product Information that are directed to Health Care Professionals, Patients and Consumers.

B. The Code applies to all communications in which claims, quotes and references are made for healthcare products or in relation to healthcare product issues, meaning single entity and compound prescription and non-prescription pharmaceutical products, biologicals, natural health products and homeopathy products.

C. The Code applies to Advertising/Promotion Systems generated by advertisers or their agents, wherein the advertiser’s product or a competitor’s product is cited by either trade name or non-proprietary name. This includes any identifiable branding element.

D. The Code applies to all Advertising/Promotion Systems and corporate messages directed to licensed members of the professions of medicine, dentistry, naturopathy, homeopathy, nursing, pharmacy and related health disciplines, to institutions, and to patient information that will be distributed by or recommended by a healthcare professional.

E. The proposed layout, including copy and illustrations, for APS intended for distribution to health professionals must be submitted to PAAB for preclearance. In the instance that copy decks are submitted in two languages only one format of the layout in either language is required.

F. Both English and French advertising copy must be submitted for preclearance, if the same material is to be presented in both languages. APS produced in other languages that are translated from a PAAB approved APS should not carry PAAB logo, it may however, include a disclaimer stating the item was translated verbatim from a PAAB approved APS.

G. The sponsoring company shall be responsible for accuracy of translation of APS.

H. The Code applies to all digital formats and media. This includes Internet, Audio, Visual, Audio/Visual (AV), Electronic, and Social Media advertising promotion systems. The Code applies equally to websites and other electronic online activities within the sponsor’s control or influence where the intended audience is Canadians. 

I. Media covered include, but are not limited to: banner ads, e-mail marketing campaigns, online patient drug therapy adherence programs, search engine marketing and optimization techniques, social media platforms, networks and bookmarks, widgets, gadgets, mobile platforms and applications, tablet software, blogs, wikis, Really Simple Syndication (RSS) feeds, CDs, DVDs, computer software, online detailing including but not limited to self-directed HCP or company representative directed, slide programs, video and television, coding systems (such as QR) and other online/Internet media/platforms.

J. When creating these APS, the sponsor should consider content, target audience and federal drug schedule within all of the requirements of the Code.

K. See more information on digital formats and media.