Andorran law: the launching of foreign advertising campaigns in a health sector?

Posted by Augé legal fiscal

The new Andorra, with its very advantageous conditions, identifies competitiveness clusters with a high added-value, that the Government wants to develop as a priority. One of these, is a cluster of health and well-being, which has the potential to develop the country’s resources and skills.

This target market is mainly made up of Spanish and French tourists, which potential remains unexploited, compared to the current offer available. Thus, there is a significant margin for growth in this field. The businessmen’s and the Government’s goal is to appeal the potential customers through a mass media marketing campaign.

However, the businessman may ask himself a question: Given that foreign countries limit advertising in the health services, does the Andorran law allow the launching of foreign advertising campaigns? This is a sensitive subject in so far as the target market is located outside of the Principality, and as a result, the advertising campaign risks to be unsuccessful.

Let’s take the example of a businessman who wants to open a dental clinic in Andorra in order to offer a high-quality service to residents of foreign countries. In addition to dental care, the clinic deals with related services such as transportation or housing.

According to the Consumer Protection Law and the Health Act, the Government of Andorra has the power to regulate and grant authorizations to advertisers of health services (Art. 26 de la Llei 13/2013, del 13 de Juny, de Competència efectiva i Protecció del Consumidor ; Art. 45 et 54 du Decret legislatiu del 26-8-2009, de publicació del text refós de la Llei general de sanitat, del 20 de març del 1989, modificada per la Llei 1/2009, del 23 de gener).

In addition, not only the Health Centers and Services Regulations, limit publicity for the health sector in general but also the official professional Board establishes the restrictions (Art. 31 à 34 du Decret del 17-07-2013 d’aprovació del Reglament pel qual es regulen els centres, els serveis i els establiments sanitaris i sociosanitaris).

As for the example of the dental clinic, it must refer for to the applicable legal norms and to the rules of the Professional Dental Organization of Andorra. The limitations imposed by this professional Organization does not include the international advertising, so no prejudice is caused to the audience of target countries.

It’s the similar approach for the other business sectors which are controlled by a professional organization like in a current example, but also for sectors not controlled by the profession.

In conclusion, the health professionals, who target an international potential market, will not find, a priori, any restrictions in the Andorran law to carry out external advertising actions.

Albert Barroso

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