RESPONSIBLY ABOUT HEALTH, is the first campaign to educate Romanians about informed and responsible consumption of OTC, dietary supplements and personal care medical devices

Initiated by RASCI (the Romanian Association of Prescription Drug Manufacturers, Food Supplements and Medical Devices), the campaign is backed by authorities, institutions and health professionals

The campaign "Responsibly About Health" was officially launched in a debate with representatives of health authorities, institutions and professionals, as well as the pharmaceutical and media industry. The campaign aims to contribute to improving the health education of consumers and Romanian patients so that they can make informed decisions about how they manage their own health.

"In the context where, on the one hand, the public accesses incomplete, incorrect or misleading information about the product categories we represent (medicines without prescription, dietary supplements] and personal care medical devices, and on the other hand, the current legislation on communication of these products leaves room for interpretation, we believe that such an educational approach is absolutely necessary to improve the health education of Romanian consumers, "says Diana Mereu, Executive Director Rascal.

Oana Cociasu, President of RAC, has stated the role of self regulation in application of best practice codes for OTC, Food Supplements and Medical Devices communication while respecting the legal, decent and truthful standards of advertising.

Initiated by RASCI, the campaign " Responsibly About Health" is supported by the Ministry of Health, the National Agency for Medicines and Medical Devices (NAMMD), the National Society of Family Medicine (SNMF), the College of Romanian Pharmacists (CFR) and the Romanian Council for Advertising (RAC).

The campaign addresses the general public, health professionals, state authorities and organisations. It seeks to contribute not only to informing but also to empowering consumers so that they are aware that their health depends on them and that they must use the products in these categories in a correct and informed manner.

"An informed and responsible patient should be able to distinguish between situations in which they can manage their own health and those in which medical check-ups are required and the advice of a specialist. Any sign of illness that does not improve in a few days, or even seems to get worse, despite some non-medication or simple treatment (with prescription drugs, for example), requires medical consultation. Incomplete information from unauthorized and unprofessional sources, incorrect or misleading can have a negative impact on people and their health in the shortest or longer term, "says Dr. Rodica Narcisa Tanasescu, President of the National Society of Family Medicine.

During the campaign launch event, government officials, important voices of the health system and representative organizations for the pharmaceutical industry and Romanian consumers, discussed topics of interest. These included: improving the overall health status and increasing life expectancy by developing and strengthening health education in the population, as well as economic benefits and reducing pressure on the health system as a result of promoting responsible management, in a way informed, products of the represented categories. At the same time, the need for clear regulation has been mentioned, with a view to creating a unitary and fair legislative framework for the communication of these product categories.

"It is important to have a collaboration between decision-makers, regulators, health professionals, industry representatives and consumers, in order to contribute to educating and improving the general health status of Romanians in the long run. We are glad that such an initiative comes from the industry and we welcome RASCI's dedication and commitment, "says Nicolae Fotin, President of ANMDM

The campaign is a long-term educational endeavor to improve the general health of Romanian consumers, and is set to run until the end of 2017. The campaign aims to involve as many factors as possible can help to promote fair information and accountability.

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