Two ads for Sarean Aesthetics, a clinic offering beauty and wellness procedures, seen on 7 January 2022:
a. A post on Sarean Aesthetics’ Instagram page stated, “It wont [sic] be long before the allergy season is upon us. This obviously varies for people depending on their allergy. It is recommended to have the jab 2 to 4 weeks pre season starting … #allergy #hayfever #allergyseason #kenalog #kenaloginjection #nurse #nurseprescriber”. An accompanying banner stated, “Struggling with hayfever? [sic] Allergy jab £70 Best time to have it is just before the season starts …” The banner included an image of a Kenalog medicine packet and a woman blowing her nose.
b. A post on the advertiser’s Facebook page featured the same text image and images as ad (a).
IssueThe ASA challenged whether the ads breached the Code because they advertised Kenalog, a prescription-only medicine, to the public.
ResponseSarean Aesthetics accepted that they should not have promoted prescription-only medicines to the general public on their Instagram and Facebook accounts. They said at the time of posting the ads, they had been unaware of the advertising rules relating to prescription-only medicines and had since removed the ads.
The CAP Code stated that prescription-only medicines or prescription-only medical treatments must not be advertised to the public.
The ASA understood that Kenalog was a prescription-only medicine. The posts were visible to anyone visiting Sarean Aesthetics’ Instagram and Facebook pages, and featured an image of a Kenalog medicine packet, and text stating, “Struggling with hayfever?[sic] Allergy jab £70”. We considered the text “Allergy jab” to be an indirect reference to Kenalog injections. We therefore considered the ads promoted prescription-only medicines to the general public and concluded that they breached the Code. We welcomed Sarean Aesthetics’ assurance that they had removed the ads.
The ads breached CAP Code (Edition 12) rule 12.12 12.12 Prescription-only medicines or prescription-only medical treatments may not be advertised to the public. (Medicines, medical devices, health-related products and beauty products).
The ads must not appear again in their current form. We told Sarean Aesthetics not to promote prescription-only medicines to the general public in future.