15.7 C
Byron Shire
September 28, 2023

Nurofen feels pain from false pill claims

Latest News

Start saving water now say Tweed Council – water restrictions may be weeks away

The Bureau of Meteorology (BOM) has declared an El Nino weather pattern, with less-than-average rainfall forecast for the Northern Rivers this year. Tweed Council is reminding residents and visitors that it is important to save water.

Other News

The war on cats

Environment Minister Tanya Plibersek marked National Threatened Species Day by 'declaring war on feral cats'. She wants to give...

Greens capitulate

Well finally, after six wasted months, a mountain of public criticism and constant pressure from the Labor government with...

Ciggie butts tops in litter prevention project 

A litter prevention project has been a success, say Byron Shire Council staff, with 1,450 pieces of litter being prevented from flowing into the Cape Byron Marine Park over a two month period.

Bicycle racing at Lismore attracts over 100 riders

Byron Bay Cycling Club’s (BBCC) inaugural closed road race through and around Lismore has been deemed a ‘success’ attracting...

Private property issue deflates bike path plan

The long-discussed plan for a cycleway between Mullumbimby and Brunswick Heads has hit a pothole, with an independent report finding a raft of issues with the preferred route.

After school is extra fun in Kyogle, Grafton, Goonellabah and Tweed

Go4Fun is a free, after-school, healthy lifestyle program for primary school-aged children who are above a healthy weight, kicks off in Term 4 in Kyogle, Grafton, Goonellabah and Tweed.

Nurofen for period pain: the Federal Court has ruled against a range of identical but specially targeted, higher priced Nurofen products, saying they are ripping off customers.
Nurofen for period pain: the Federal Court has ruled against a range of identical but specially targeted, higher priced Nurofen products, saying they are ripping off customers.

The consumer watchdog has given Nurofen a major headache.

The painkiller-maker has been ordered to pull its targeted pain relief range off shop shelves and could be fined more than $1 million after the Federal Court ruled it misled consumers.

Reckitt Benckiser, the company behind Nurofen, has admitted to peddling identical products that were marketed to treat specific types of pain, and for almost double the price.

The competition watchdog launched court action against the UK-based pharmaceutical giant earlier this year, alleging Nurofen’s treatments for back pain, period pain, migraine pain and tension headaches all contained the same active ingredient, ibuprofen lysine 342mg.

Nurofen spokesperson Montse Pena said Nurofen did not set out to mislead consumers.

“Nurofen has co-operated with the ACCC in relation to these proceedings and will fully comply with the court order made today,” she said in a statement on Monday.

Australian Competition and Consumer Commission chairman Rod Sims said the price of Nurofen’s targeted pain relief range was significantly higher than similar painkillers.

“The Nurofen specific pain products were being sold at retail prices almost double that of Nurofen’s standard ibuprofen products and the general pain relief products of its competitors,” he said.

The Federal Court has ordered Reckitt Benckiser to remove the products from stores within three months and amend packets so consumers know that other painkillers are just as suitable.

The multinational was also ordered to publish website and newspaper articles to clarify the status of the drugs, introduce a consumer protection compliance program and pay the ACCC’s legal costs.

A court hearing about a likely fine is yet to be scheduled, but there are penalties of up to $1.1 million per offence.

“I imagine there is more than one contravention … but the penalties clearly should be significant,” Mr Sims said.

Ms Pena said Nurofen’s targeted range was launched to help consumers work out their pain relief options, “particularly within the grocery environment where there is no healthcare professional to assist decision making”.

But Mr Sims said the company was taking advantage of people’s medical ignorance for profit.

“They were clearly, in our view, trying to mislead consumers to buy something they might not otherwise have bought, and pay more for it,” he said.

He said any representations which are difficult for a consumer to test will now face greater scrutiny from the ACCC.

“We’re definitely having a crackdown on (companies) misleading consumers about health claims,” Mr Sims said.

“There’ll be more cases in the new year.”

Australian Pain Management Association chief executive Elizabeth Carrigan welcomed the Federal Court’s decision, saying people living with pain are vulnerable to Reckitt Benckiser’s “exploitative” pricing regime.

“We hope that the penalty to be imposed by the court will be sufficiently sizeable to dissuade other companies from making unsubstantiated claims,” she said.

Support The Echo

Keeping the community together and the community voice loud and clear is what The Echo is about. More than ever we need your help to keep this voice alive and thriving in the community.

Like all businesses we are struggling to keep food on the table of all our local and hard working journalists, artists, sales, delivery and drudges who keep the news coming out to you both in the newspaper and online. If you can spare a few dollars a week – or maybe more – we would appreciate all the support you are able to give to keep the voice of independent, local journalism alive.


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here

BES rejects Ramsey’s proposal to leave conservation zones to private landholders

Ballina Environment Society (BES) has come out strongly against conservative independent Ballina Councillor Eva Ramsey’s proposal to have private property owners ‘opt in’ to conservation zones.

Review on remote Indigenous Australians sheds light on the Voice to Parliament

As a white man living on Bundjalung Country, I acknowledge that it is not easy to make the cross-cultural shift from a Western paradigm lens to comprehend and appreciate the rich diversity and complexity of 65,000 years of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Peoples’ sociocultural and spiritual history.

What is the future for Lismore Regional Gallery and Museum? Have your say

The Lismore Regional Gallery and the Lismore Museum (Richmond River Historical Society) want to hear from you. If you are an artist, creative, arts...

Pearces Creek Bridge to be replaced – road closure

The replacement of Pearces Creek Bridge has led to the temporary closure of Eltham Road, at Pearces Creek Bridge for one month from Monday, 23 October.