ADIA is the peak business organisation representing manufacturers and suppliers of dental products. Our vision is for an industry that empowers oral health professionals to advance the health and wellbeing of all Australians...................... — ADIA Strategic Plan


$10,000 Fine For Code Of Practice Breach

$10,000 Fine For Code Of Practice Breach

7th Nov 17

Summary —

SDI Limited has received a $10,000 fine for a determination that one of its promotions had influenced a healthcare professional to do other than select therapeutic products based upon genuine consumer health needs and clinical evidence.

Key Issues For The Dental Industry —

At the request of the Australian Government, members of the Australian Dental Industry Association (ADIA) approved a code of practice that has as its primary objective the intent of ensuring that decisions on management (including treatment options) for dental and oral health needs are based on sound clinical evidence, not driven by incentives or other influences.  Two recent complaint determinations have provided greater guidance on what this means for suppliers of dental products.

From the outset, the practical implications of the ADIA Code of Practice was that if a business conducted a promotional activity encourages a healthcare professional to purchase a particular type or brand of product (that is used to diagnose or treat a patient) that promotional activity is inconsistent with the principles set out in the ADIA Code of Practice.  The two following determinations and reinforced this outcome.

SDI Limited Complaint —

The ADIA-CCC Code Complaints Committee found that SDI Limited had breached the ADIA Code of Practice as in its advertising literature associated with its “End of Year Specials” email promotion in June 2017, SDI Limited was promoting therapeutic products in a manner inconsistent with the ADIA Code of Practice. Specifically, if a dental professional purchased products they were eligible to receive (by means other than purchase) goods in the form of Apple computing products including an iWatch, iPhone, iPad or Macbook with the value of the good/s rising in a manner that was commensurate with the value of the dental products purchase.

As this was the second breach of the ADIA Code of Practice undertaken by SDI Limited the ADIA-CCC Code Complaints Committee applied a $10,000 fine.

Geistlich Pharma Australia —

In responding to a complaint, Geistlich Pharama Australia admitted that it conducted a competition in a manner inconsistent with the ADIA Code of Practice.  The competition was promoted in literature associated with its “Shape Up Your Practice” competition through June – September 2017 where competition entry was the result ordering of therapeutic products. 

In circumstances where the competition has ceased, and Geistlich Pharma Australia had committed to discontinuing the campaign, no penalty was applied. It was noted that Geistlich Pharma Australia acknowledged and apologised for the oversight in conducting the competition in a manner inconsistent with the ADIA Code of Practice.

.When viewed collectively these two complaint determinations are significant and have reinforced the underpinning principles behind the ADIA Code of Practice.  With respect to the SDI Limited complaint outcome, the outcome confirmed the intent of the ADIA Code of Practice that a promotional activity should not inappropriately influence a healthcare professional's decision to select one manufacturers' product at the expense of another.  The Geistlich Pharma Australia complaint outcome confirmed that it is not appropriate to make an entry to a competition dependent upon the purchase of a product.

Member Engagement —

The ADIA Code of Practice is endorsed by the entire membership at a general meeting with responsibility for monitoring the effectiveness and compliance resting with the ADIA-CAC Code Administration Committee.  ADIA members join stakeholders from the dental profession and patient representatives in determining complaints by serving on the ADIA-CCC Code Complaints Committee.

Further Information —

For further information on the ADIA Code of Practice send an email to or 1300 943 094.  To keep up to date follow ADIA on Facebook at or subscribe to the Twitter feed @AusDental.

Currency Of Information & Disclaimer —

This update was issued on 7 November 2017 and please note that changes in circumstances after the publication of material or information may impact upon its accuracy and also change regulatory compliance obligations. The statements, regulatory and technical information contained herein are believed to be accurate and are provided for information purposes only. Readers are responsible for assessing its relevance and verifying the accuracy of the content. To the fullest extent permitted by law, ADIA will not be liable for any loss, damage, cost or expense incurred in relation to or arising as a result of relying on the information presented here. 


This information is available for your use under a Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 Australia licence, with the exception of the ADIA logo, other images and where otherwise stated.

A.. A D I A . .S T R A T G E G I C . .A L L I A N C E S


Dental Industry News

  • TGA Publishes Draft Advertising Guidance

    15th Aug 18

    The dental industry is playing a lead role in supporting the TGA develop industry guidance on the 2018 TGA Therapeutic Goods Advertising Code, a document that sets clear standards for advertising medical devices to consumers. More

  • TPP-11’s Ratification Supports Dental Products Trade

    5th Nov 18

    Australia’s ratification of the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP-11) trade agreement paves the way for increased trade in dental products as a result of reduced technical barriers to trade. More