MSD fined for misleading Zoely claims

More than 8000 doctors have received a letter correcting misleading advertising claims about the oral contraceptive pill Zoely, which have landed the manufacturer with a $75,000 fine.

Merck Sharp and Dohme (MSD) sales representatives claimed in promotional material to GPs that the product, which contains nomegestrol acetate and oestradiol, caused “short, light and often less painful withdrawal bleeds”.

Under the Medicines Australia Code of Conduct, companies cannot make general claims that a product is “better, stronger or more widely prescribed”.