ALEXANDRIA, VA Health care has taken
center stage in the 2008 elections. But the media have already set
the scene portraying pharmaceutical companies as villains, when
they bother to mention them at all. The networks attack the industry
about drug costs, but give little credit for breakthroughs and
miracle drugs. This fits the network pattern of mistreating any
successful business, said L. Brent Bozell III, president of the
Media Research Center, the parent of the Business & Media Institute
(BMI) which authored the report. The coverage is so one-sided,
its shameless, said Dan Gainor, BMI director.
BMIs new in-depth study, Prescription for Bias, documents the media attacks on the pharmaceutical industry. The Special Report quantifies the bias against drug companies based on analysis of 132 stories on prescription or over-the-counter drugs from the ABC, CBS and NBC evening newscasts between January 1 and Sept. 30, 2006.
Prescription for Bias Key Findings
Industry Ignored 80% of stories excluded the viewpoint of the pharmaceutical industry
Cost to Consumer Media overemphasized consumer drug costs as opposed to drug development costs at a radio of 11:1
Companies Unnoticed Only 22% of the stories even named the company responsible for developing life saving cures
What Development Costs? A mere 2% of the stories addressed the cost to companies for researching and developing drugs
Left-wing Causes Nineteen stories focused on drugs that were liberal causes including the morning-after-pill or HPV vaccine Gardasil
The full special report including recommendations to improve network coverage available at www.BusinessAndMedia.org.
To schedule an interview with MRC President Bozell or an MRC spokesperson, please contact Tim Scheiderer (x. 126) or Colleen OBoyle (x. 122) at 703.683.5004.