Bristol-Myers has announced a self-imposed ban on advertising new drug brands in their first year of availability. Well, actually, they've only banned advertising to consumers. All kinds of ads, sales calls and oh, the odd promotional cruise invitation will now rain down upon your doctor. It's not a ban so much as a change in strategy.
And a good PR move. The NYTimes report contains this detail: Bristol-Myers "has been working to improve its image in the wake of investigations of its accounting practices by the Justice Department." So maybe not surprisingly Bristol-Myers' real goal is to avoid FDA warnings and government interference for awhile. They just happen to be smart enough to look good while doing it.