Our Organization

About PAAB

The Pharmaceutical Advertising Advisory Board (PAAB) is an independent not-for-profit organization funded on a fee-for-service model. It is the only regulator whose preclearance service is recognized by Health Canada for advertising directed to healthcare professionals. PAAB works to protect Canadians by ensuring that healthcare product advertising meets the regulatory, scientific, therapeutic, and ethical standards outlined in the Code of Advertising Acceptance. All PAAB approved materials bear the PAAB logo.

 

Working Together For You

PAAB maintains a collaborative relationship with Health Canada. In fact, as an ex-officio observer to the Board of Directors, Health Canada is invited to send an official to attend all PAAB board meetings. Health Canada acts as advisor to the Board without relinquishing any part of its authority under the Food and Drugs Act and Regulations.

The Board of Directors

The PAAB board is made up of representatives from a number of key stakeholders within the healthcare landscape. Below you can see a list of member organizations and their appointed representative:

Lorenzo Biondi

Chair

vacant

Vice Chair

vacant

Treasurer

Terry Cully

Association of Medical Advertising Agencies (AMAA)

Denis Morrice

Best Medicines Coalition

Jim Hall

Canadian Association of Medical Publishers (CAMP)

Tammy Quinn

Canadian Pharmacists Association (CPhA)

Jeff Connell

Canadian Generic Pharmaceutical Association (CGPA)

Cecile Bensimon

Canadian Medical Association (CMA)

Crawford Wright

Innovative Medicines Canada

Agni Shah

Consumer Council of Canada

Kristin Willemsen

Consumer Health Products Canada (CHPC)

Anita Hammer

BIOTECanada

The Organization

Mission Target Icon
MISSION

The Pharmaceutical Advertising Advisory Board provides independent preclearance and advisory services that enable healthcare product advertising to comply with the Canadian regulatory framework.

VISION

Truthful and trustworthy healthcare product advertising that promotes the health and safety of Canadians.

Values Scales
VALUES

Integrity, Competency, Credibility, Independence, Excellence, Transparency

Mandate


The PAAB is an independent review agency whose primary role is to ensure that healthcare product communication for prescription, non-prescription, biological and natural health products is accurate, balanced and evidence-based, and reflects current and best practice.

The PAAB also monitors trends in health product advertising and promotion and adjusts its code and practices as required to fulfill its mandate.

PAAB Scope


The scope of the PAAB includes promotional healthcare product communication for prescription, non-prescription, biological and natural health products to healthcare professionals in all media. PAAB also provides advisory comments on direct-to-consumer materials for prescription drugs.

PAAB’s Scope evolves with the regulatory framework.

Why PAAB is important

1 Circle

Rigorous independent review to help ensure promotional materials are balanced, accurate, complete, and trustworthy

2 Circle

Confidence that patient receive accurate and balanced information about their products and diseases

3 Circle

Assurance of a level and compliant playing field for the industry.

Healthcare Shield

Healthcare Professional

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Patient

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Industry

Industry

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healthcare professionals

PAAB Strategic Plan

PAAB 2020-2022 Strategic Plan

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PAAB History Timeline

Take a look at the evolution of the PAAB from its inception in 1976 to its current structure, policies and practices. View some of our key milestones throughout the years.

Creation

The PAAB is incorporated

Getting started

A little under a year into its existence, The PAAB had 2 staff and reviewed about 400 submissions.

First PAAB Code

The first official PAAB Code was published to communicate advertising standards. Although the code standards applied to all advertising/promotional systems, preclearance review was required specifically for journal ads and direct mail. The PAAB Code applies to all pharmaceutical manufacturers.

The scope was rapidly expanded to cover service aids, audio programs, and service-oriented vehicles (desk calendars, diaries, personal prescription pads).

Code Revision

The code was updated to include additional provisions which were specific to direct mail and service aids.

Code Revisions

The code was revised to specify mandatory preclearance of detail aids and electronic material.

First National Training Workshops

The PAAB recognizes that training is a valuable tool and an important service to offer its clients. The first National Training Workshops took place in Toronto and Montreal. Approximately 100 clients attended the event at each of the two sites. National workshops continue to be offered annually. At these workshops, we strive to address relevant changes in the code, marketplace and regulatory landscape while still exploring the basics of the code. More information about the workshops can be found on our events page

DTCARx opinions

The scope of The PAAB preclearance review was expanded to include opinions of DTCRx advertising and information

Major Code Revision

A complete rewrite of the code with the addition of explanatory notes to elaborate on the code standards

Complaint procedures

The PAAB remodelled the complaint process with the addition of mandatory timelines and specification of who could launch a complaint. The complaints process can be found on the PAAB Code website.

Opinions

The scope of The PAAB preclearance review is expanded to include a formal opinion service for clarification on whether an activity is advertising subject to the regulations, linkage of materials, acceptability of concepts, contextual issues, acceptability of references for product claims, and exemption requests. For more information see “Policy Clarification - Opinions and Complete Submission Procedure”

PreNOC reviews

In recognition of tight timelines around product launches, the PAAB offers a pre-NOC review of up to two Advertising/Promotional Systems (APS) once the Health Canada review of the product monograph is at final-draft stage. PAAB approval will not be provided until the product monograph is approved by Health Canada and the drug product is issued Notice of Compliance.

Patient Material Code Revision

The scope of the code was expanded to include materials directed to patients through healthcare professionals. Standards relating to internet advertising were also added to the code.

Code Revision

Key issues were visited during this revision and update to the PAAB Code. Most notably was the issue of Prescribing Information. Prescribing Information includes important information that may be required for the optimal, safe and effective us of a drug product. Standards specific to digital advertising were incorporated into the code.

New Office

With the growing number of staff, The PAAB needed a larger space. In January of 2012, PAAB moved into our new and current office space at 300 -1305 Pickering Parkway. Early February The PAAB hosted an Open house for all its clients to view the new office.

Major Revision

Major revisions to the PAAB Code were implemented in 2013. These changes included a revamp of the evidence sections of the PAAB code. There was also a major update to the fair balance requirements. Fair balance is a term used to describe the presentation of risk information in a manner which is sufficient with respect to comprehensiveness and emphasis. The code was also revised to provide more specific guidance around digital tools such as websites, ipads, search engine optimization/marketing etc.

First independent system audit

The PAAB Board of Directors commissioned an independent audit of the PAAB reviews mechanism to assess overall operational performances and consistency within the review system. The audit was completed by Integrated Pharma Services. A summary of the results can be seen here.

40th Anniversary

PAAB celebrates 40 years of excellence delivering pre-clearance review in support of trustworthy healthcare product communications within the Canadian regulatory landscape.

Today

Currently The PAAB sits at 21 staff members, 14 or which are Reviewers. In 2016, the team completed over 7,700 reviews. PAAB continues to progress. Stay in the know about the future by signing up to our newsletter, reading our newsletters in the resource section, and following us on Twitter and LinkedIn.

Our Clients

Advertising Agencies

Agencies that have submitted advertising for PAAB review on behalf of the sponsoring pharmaceutical companies.


#

14eight Santé Numérique Inc

3H Communications

6 Degrees Integrated Communications

A

Anderson DDB Health & Lifestyle

Anderson DDB Sante Vie Esprit 

Antibody Healthcare Communications

Arrivals + Departures Communications Limited

Atlas Content Studio Inc

B

Bang Albino inc

Biotext Solutions Inc

Bloom Search Marketing

bMod Communications

Boondoc Technologies Incorporated

Brest Consulting Inc

Brightworks Inter. Marketing

C

Cameron Stewart LifeScience Inc

Can-Med Pharma

CDM Montreal Inc

Certo Creative Inc

Cine-Cast Inc

CloudRaker

Commix Communications Inc

CORE Health Communications Inc

CPC Healthcare Communications

Curatio Networks Inc

E

Elite Digital Inc

Ellington Group

eMotion Picture Studios

Energi Pr Inc

EnsembleIQ

Enterprise de communications Tank inc

Evolus Inc

F

FCB Health Canada

Fleishman-Hillard Communications

FUSE Health Inc

G

Gallant Leaman Group

Glia Scientific Communication

Graphite Digital Ltd

Grip Limited

GSW

Guiding Star Communucations

H

H&F Continuing Education Inc

Havas Life Toronto

Health 4 Brands

HealthConnect Inc

Healthion Communications

HealthPlexus Ltd.

Healthwise Creative Resource Group

Hill & Knowlton Strategies

I

Insig Corp

Integrated Medhealth Communication North America

inVentiv Canada Inc

IQ Inc.

IQVIA Solutions Canada Inc

J

john st

Jumo Health

K

Klick Inc

Knight Labs Inc

K.S. Integrated Communications

L

Lara Holmes

Lemieux Bedard Communication

LSD The Agency

Lyceum CME Inc

M

Marketing 4 Health Inc

Maven Medical Marketing Inc

McCann Health

McCann Health Medical Communications Canada Ltd

Mead Johnson Nutrition (Canada) Co

Media Platforms Inc

Meducom Health Inc

meshMD

Murphy Paolucci Communications Inc

N

National Public Relations

O

Oasis Communications

Ogilvy CommonHealth

Ogilvy Health

Oromo Digital Group Inc

Outpost 379 Inc

P

PGI

PharmaComm

Pinnacle Marketing & Education

Platform at Publicis Media, a division of Leo Burnett Company Ltd

Proof Inc

Publicis Toronto, a division of Publicis Canada Inc

R

Ravenshow Creative Inc

Renegade Digital Media Inc

Rich Media

S

Sagemedica Inc

Scientific Insights

Script

SCURRY Communications

Services Indegene Aptilion Inc

Small Dog Communications Inc

Snell Medical Communications

Solisco Printing Inc

STA Healthcare Communications

T

The AdPharm

The Exponential Exchange Group Inc

The Gibson Group

The IDea Shoppe

Toc Toc Communications

Trois Prime Inc

W

Weber Shandwick

Healthcare Product Companies

Healthcare Product companies that have submitted advertising for PAAB review.


A

AbbVie Corporation

Aequus Pharmaceuticals Inc

Akcea Therapeutics Canada

Alk-Abello Pharmaceuticals Inc

Allergan Canada

Amgen Canada Inc

Amicus Therapeutics UK Ltd

ApoPharma Inc

Apotex Inc

Astellas Pharma Canada Inc

AstraZeneca Canada Inc

AVIR Pharma Inc

B

Bausch & Lomb Canada Inc

Bayer Inc

BioSyent Pharma Inc

Boehringer Ingelheim Ltd

Boiron Canada Inc

Bristol Myers Squibb Canada

C

Celgene

CSL Behring Canada Inc

D

Dr. Reddy's Laboratories Canada Inc

Duchesnay Inc

E

Eli Lilly Canada Inc

EMD Serono

Emergent BioSolutions Canada Inc

Evolus Inc

F

Ferring Inc

G

Galderma Canada

Genzyme Canada Inc

Gilead Sciences Canada

GlaxoSmithKline

H

Hill Dermaceuticals Inc

Hoffmann-La Roche Ltd

I

Indivior Canada Ltd

Intercept Pharmaceuticals Inc

Ipsen Limited

Iroko International LP

J

JAMP Pharma Corporation

Janssen Inc

K

Kaleo Inc

Knight Therapeutics Inc

L

Leo Pharma Inc

Lundbeck Canada

Lupin Pharma Canada

M

Medexus

Medunik Canada

Merck Frosst Canada Ltd

Merus Labs

Mitsubishi Tanabe Pharma America Inc

Mylan Pharmaceuticals ULC

N

Novadaq Technologies ULC

Novartis Canada Inc

Novartis Consumer Health

Novo Nordisk Canada Inc

O

Otsuka Canada Pharmaceutical

P

Paladin Laboratories

Pediapharm

Pendopharm

Pfizer Canada Inc

Pharm Canada Inc

Pierre Fabre Dermo-Cosmetique Canada Inc

Purdue Pharma

R

Reckitt Benckiser Canada Inc

Recordati Rare Diseases Inc

S

Sandoz Canada Inc

Sanofi Consumer Health Inc

Sanofi-Aventis Canada Inc

Sanofi Pasteur Limited

Searchlight Pharma Inc

Seattle Genetics Inc

Servier Canada

Shire Canada Inc

Sprout Pharmaceuticals Canada Ltd

Stallergenes Canada Inc

STI Technologies Limited

Sunovion Phamaceuticals Inc

T

Taiho Pharma Canada Inc

Takeda Canada Inc

Teligent Canada Inc

TerSera Canada Inc

Teva Canada 

Tribute Pharmaceuticals

V

Valeant Canada Consumer Prods

Valeant Pharma

Valeo Pharma Inc 

Valneva Canada Inc

Vertex Pharmaceuticals Inc

ViiV Healthcare ULC

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