Lunches and gifts from drug reps are still an issue. The Open Others said that these freebies can cloud a physician's objectivity. A few said.
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- Do Free Drug Rep Lunches Sway Doctors? See What Physicians Say
- The Truth About Drug Companies’ Influence on Your Doctor’s Prescriptions | Point of Blue
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A survey by Pew reported that just over half of Americans believe that accepting gifts from the pharmaceutical industry influences how physicians make prescribing decisions saying that the impact is either extremely large or large. Those surveyed disapproved of even small gifts to doctors -- 86 percent believe free dinners should not be allowed; 78 percent believe free lunches at the office should not be allowed; 70 percent believe free notepads and pens should not be allowed.
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The result of that backlash and, of course, spiraling drug costs has led doctors, drug companies and the government to establish some ground rules to curb the gift giving and exposure of attending physicians and residents to drug reps. Allan Coukell, a pharmacist and director of the Medical Safety Division at the Pew Health Group, told me some institutions have curtailed preceptorships, recognizing that there is no possible benefit to patients for a salesperson to observe their interactions with a doctor.
To try to gain ground, some institutions have implemented their own drug detailing programs called "academic detailing". Five pharmacists were trained, like drug reps, in the techniques of academic detailing, and then went out to connect with physicians in the hospital. The results showed a significant decrease in "wrong" medications and a significant increase in scripts written for the right ones.
Similar positive results have been found for the use of antibiotics and antidepressants. The government has also become more involved. As part of last year's Health Reform law, drug and medical device makers will be required to publicly report payments and gifts they make to physicians.
Prior to that, Minnesota, Massachusetts and Vermont had already taken steps to unmask the relationship between Pharma and doctors by publishing who is getting paid by whom on a public database. Proof, again, that drug detailing works. Since this provision doesn't start until , we don't have any results to report. But it's hard to believe Pharma won't find loopholes for drug reps to exploit. Either way, it's worth knowing that if your doctor's pen has a drug's logo written on it, it may be more than just a pen.
Do Free Drug Rep Lunches Sway Doctors? See What Physicians Say
Rahul K. Parikh is a physician and writer in the San Francisco Bay Area.
He wrote the Vital Signs column on Salon in For better or worse, I grew up in the heyday of chummy relationships between physicians and pharmaceutical sales reps. Seventeen years later, I do care that this resource is available to the general public , and I hope it becomes a commonplace critical tool consumers use to evaluate their healthcare. Most health insurance plans still limit which patients can see which physicians, and what it costs to see them.
For example, when I searched one of my physicians on the site, I learned that one particular pharmaceutical company treated him to lunch multiple times in Check out Open Payments Data, and check back often. While the site launched in September , its search capacity is still in beta mode. In June, CMS will add more data to the site , including all payments by pharmaceutical reps to physicians. Did we already mention how most of the data in calls has already been heard before in some shape or form?
The Truth About Drug Companies’ Influence on Your Doctor’s Prescriptions | Point of Blue
If you have brand new data about a certain product, make sure to show it off. As research has shown, oncologists prefer having fresh data delievered within six months from product launch, and data will differ across therapeutic areas.
For example, if a disease is highly relevant at the moment, you will need to be more expeditive with delivering data during calls. The fact of the matter is, lots of pharma companies and sales reps already use tablets in their promotion efforts. An effective sales rep call means showing the right materials, at the right time. Instead, you can turn your scientific publication into an engaging explainer video and have the rep show it on a tablet during their call.
At BlueNovius, our PubExplainer videos are about 90 seconds long, which means that the physician will have enough time to watch the full length, even if they do have only 2 minutes available for the sales rep. In order to truly maximize your approach to physicians, you can and should leverage as many channels as possible.
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- Physicians and Drug Representatives: Exploring the Dynamics of the Relationship.
In doing so, you can also set different standards for sales reps to judge their success, not only by the number and frequence of calls. For example, once you start using email marketing as a strategy, you can analyze performance by the number of opened emails and clickthroughs within those emails. Moreover, once you get into using video marketing , things get even easier. As can be seen from research, NPP is one of the best compliments to the traditional sales rep model for pharma. With a solution such as PubExplainer , you can use videos as a great multichannel marketing device.
follow site One of the most effective strategies is using videos before a sales rep visits. As their time with HCPs is pretty limited, pre educating the physician is key here..
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Do your sales reps need a helping hand to see more physicians? We know what it takes to build a successful pharma marketing strategy and we can work with you on your way to success.
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Reach out to us today and see how to help your sales reps become influencers. If you want to read more posts like this one, feel free to subscribe to our blog. We deliver the freshest pharma content to your inbox once per week — no spam. We help companies educate physicians and improve patient outcomes. Physicians decline access to pharma sales reps Besides the negative attitude towards pharma sales reps, there are additional problems for access to HCPs.
Fiece competition One of the reasons why physicians are increasingly declining access to reps is the fact that the number of reps is still fairly high. Face-to-face communication is not prefered any more Lots of professions have gone almost fully digital, and HCPs are no exception. Physicians are taught to refuse early on Pharma sales reps may have been taught to sell as part of their education, but HCPs are no different either. How pharma can help sales reps The traditional pharma sales model is far from dead, it just needs some revamping for the modern age.
Offer fresh data Did we already mention how most of the data in calls has already been heard before in some shape or form?