The Turkish Medicine and Medical Devices Agency (“Agency”) has confirmed that an existing advertising ban also includes contact lenses. Discussions had arisen about whether contact lenses were included in the ban. The Agency requested an opinion from the Social Security Institution (“Institution”) to clarify the issue.

The Regulation on Sale, Advertisement and Promotion of Medical Devices (“Regulation”) was published in Official Gazette number 29001 on 15 May 2014. The Regulation states that all direct or indirect advertisements (including shows, films, series, or news), in all media or public communication mediums (including the internet) are banned for medical devices which are reimbursed by the government.

However, discussions arose about whether contact lenses are subject to government reimbursement and therefore included in the ban.

At the Agency’s request, the Institution confirmed that contact lenses are in fact deemed to be medical devices, which are reimbursed by the government within the scope of the Institution’s Communique on Health Practice.

According to the Regulation, medical device sellers which breach the advertising ban will be warned for first offences. However, for second and subsequent offences, the medical device seller’s activities will be suspended for 15 days.

Please see this link for full text of the Agency’s announcement (only available in Turkish).