Marketing 2 min read

Google to Stop Running Ads For Unproven Medical Techniques

Google announced over the weekend that it would be banning all ads that promote unproven medical techniques on its platform.

Google to Stop Running Ads For Unproven Medical Techniques

On Friday, Google announced that it would no longer accept ads for experimental or unproven medical techniques. These include stem cell therapy, gene therapy, as well as cellular therapy.

Over the years, the digital marketing strategy of stem cell clinics has evolved into a direct-to-consumer method. Using several online advertising platforms, these clinics claim to offer treatments to degenerative lung diseases, ALS, macular degeneration, and multiple sclerosis.

The problem is, these treatments are unproven or experimental.

At best, these bogus claims would raise their patients’ hope only to dash it again. On the other hand, untested procedures could affect the patients’ well-being.

According to The Washington Post, untested stem cell therapy could lead to severe blindness for some patients.

Although the practice has enjoyed minimal scrutiny in the past, the federal regulators are finally cracking down on these clinics. Back in June, the FDA won a case to shut down a clinic in Florida.

Now, Google is joining the effort to curb the practice of unproven medical techniques.

No More Ads for Unproven Medical Techniques

In its announcement, Google explained that the new policy would prevent treatments with “no established biomedical or scientific basis” from advertising on its platform. The restriction also extends to treatments with “insufficient formal clinical testing to justify widespread clinical use.”

The search engine giant did not provide numerical details of the increase in the bad ads. However, it did state that the ads no longer has a place on its platform.

While Google specifically called out stem cell therapy and other similar forms of treatment, the barring policy applies to all untested therapies.

In a statement, president of the International Society for Stem Cell Research, Deepak Srivastava said:

“Google’s new policy banning advertising for speculative medicines is a much-needed and welcome step to curb the marketing of unscrupulous medical products such as unproven stem cell therapies.”

Srivastava further explained that the pre-mature marketing and commercialization of unproven stem cell products are terrible for biomedical research. Aside from threatening public health, promising unproven treatment undermines the development of legitimate new therapies.

With that said, Google stated that it would continue to evaluate ongoing research and revise its policies accordingly in the future.

Read More: Upcoming State Attorneys’ Antitrust Investigation Targets Google

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Sumbo Bello

Sumbo Bello is a creative writer who enjoys creating data-driven content for news sites. In his spare time, he plays basketball and listens to Coldplay.

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