[saymaListserv] Antibiotics

Mary Calhoun moriah at preferred.com
Tue May 29 19:08:19 JEST 2001


Dear Sunday Rounds,

Last weekend I heard part of your interview on the topic of antibiotics,
including the problem of antibiotic-resistant germs.  It reminded me of
a Neosporin promotion that's been going on, and that seems to me to be
out in left field as far as good sense and public education are
concerned.

A few months back a temp employee in a super-store handed me a free
sample and a glossy flyer.  The text emphasizes preventing scars, the
image-with-the-eye-contact is a pretty young woman who might have
concern for personal appearance, and the slogan is "every cut -- every
time."  I saw the same ad on TV just a week or so ago.

The manufacturer's message struck me as superficial (playing on the
fears of aging boomers?), unhealthy (do teen girls need "unscarred" as
another form of "perfect" to worry about?), unwise (isn't public
education now stressing careful use of antibiotics?), greedy (a cosmetic
pitch to over-sell a medication?), and obscene (public health be dinged,
let's make money on this stuff!).

For some time I've been wondering to whose attention I might draw this
ad that might make a difference.  If Neosporin's campaign bothers you,
or any of your featured physicians, I hope Sunday Rounds will say so on
the air, and help keep the public message clear.  If you know a reason
why cosmetic use of this antibiotic is OK, I'd be interested to hear it.

Sincerely,

Mary Calhoun
Abingdon, VA
(listener, WETS-FM, Johnson City, TN)





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