This study explored the influence of the presumed influence model in the context of DTC (direct-to-consumer) advertising. A survey of 404 physicians studied presumed effects of DTC advertising on patients and whether the presumed effects influenced physicians' support for regulation and response to patient requests. Results partially supported the proposed model. Physicians perceived the highest degree of DTC advertising influence on patients' inquiries with their doctors and requests for advertised drugs and the lowest degree for beneficial influence of DTC ads. Physicians tend to support government regulation of DTC advertising, and their support is consistent across different demographic and perceptual variables. While physicians' responses to patients' requests for an advertised drug is mixed, greater presumed detrimental effects predicted refusal of patient requests, even after controlling for physicians' demographic and attitudinal characteristics. However, acceptance of patients' requests and recommendation of other drugs are found to be unrelated to presumed DTC advertising influence. The results are discussed in relation to existing theoretical work and DTC advertising literature. Future research recommendations are also provided.
Bibliographical noteFunding Information:
This? study? was? funded? by? a? grant? from? the? University? of? Minnesota.? The?authors?acknowledge?Dr.? Paul?Pentel?at?the?Hennepin?County? Medical?Center?(Minneapolis,?MN)?for?helpful?suggestions?and?assistance?in?data?collection.