The Therapeutic Goods Administration (TGA), part of the Department of Health, has issued six infringement notices totalling $79,920 to Peter Evans Chef Pty Ltd. The TGA also issued a directions notice to the company and to sole Director, Peter Evans, to ensure the removal of the alleged non-compliant advertising.
Fines were issued to the company for the alleged advertising of therapeutic goods that were not, at the time of advertising, included in the Australian Register of Therapeutic Goods (ARTG). These include the ‘BioCharger’ device, hyperbaric oxygen therapy chambers and two oral medicines.
Under the Therapeutic Goods Act 1989 (the Act), therapeutic goods, including medical devices and medicines, must be entered in the ARTG before they can be lawfully advertised in Australia, (unless a specific exemption, approval or authority applies).
Fines were also issued for the alleged advertising of static magnet products and hyperbaric oxygen therapy chambers that contained statements that implied the products were endorsed by a health professional.
It is a requirement of the Therapeutic Goods Advertising Code (No 2) 2018 that products are endorsed by health professionals, health practitioners or medical researchers.
In April 2020, the company was issued two infringement notices for alleged breaches of the Act in relation to the ‘BioCharger’ device. At that time the TGA issued a warning to the company about other products.
Due to the repeated nature of the alleged advertising breaches, the TGA has also issued a directions notice to Mr Evans and his company, to cease advertising therapeutic goods not entered in the ARTG and to discontinue making various claims about therapeutic products.
Important information about advertising therapeutic goods
Advertisers are responsible for ensuring that therapeutic goods advertising is compliant with the Act. The TGA has published information about general advertising requirements.
Educational information and resources about Australia’s advertising rules for therapeutic goods can be found on the TGA website.
The TGA takes action against breaches of the Act
The regulatory scheme is critical to the safety of Australian consumers and the TGA investigates suspected unlawful activity in relation to therapeutic goods.
The TGA reminds online advertisers that sanctions and penalties can apply if they advertise therapeutic goods (e.g. medicines and medical devices) in a way that does not comply with Australia’s advertising laws. A range of compliance and enforcement tools means that the TGA can issue infringement notices and even take court action in relation to non-compliant advertising.
The TGA encourages people the reporting of suspected non-compliant advertising.
The TGA website includes tips for consumers about how to spot a dodgy health product ad.