ANOTHER B12 COVID-19 ADVERTISING CLAMPDOWN
Another Aesthetic business has been rapped for Vitamin B12 injections relating to COVID-19.
A promotional email from Skinspace, an aesthetic clinic in Manchester, received on 17 March 2020 by the Advertising Standards Authority had the subject line “40% OFF! IN THE FIGHT AGAINST VIRUSES!”.
Text in the body of the email stated “ITS [sic] TIME TO BOOST YOUR IMMUNITY! IN THE FIGHT AGAINST VIRUSES! BOOK IN FOR YOUR VITAMIN D & B12 SHOTS! SUPPORTS YOUR IMMUNE SYSTEM, LUNG FUNCTION AND AIDS FASTER RECOVERY FROM ILLNESS & VIRUSES!”.
That was followed by pricing information.
The advertising of prescription-only medicines to the general public was prohibited by the Human Medicines Regulations 2012 (HMRs).
The ASA understood that all licensed forms of injectable vitamin D and injectable vitamin B12 were prescription-only medicines. The ad stated “BOOK IN FOR YOUR VITAMIN D & B12 SHOTS” and was sent to existing SKINSPACEUK customers, who were consumers, rather than medical professionals.
Also, the ad gave the impression to recipients that the vitamin D and vitamin B12 injections being sold were effective in helping to prevent or treat coronavirus/COVID-19.
The ASA ruled that the ad must not appear again in the form complained about. They told PCK SKIN (Manchester) Ltd t/a SKINSPACEUK to ensure they did not promote prescription-only medicines to the general public.
Here is a link to the detail of the enforcement rules: