Monday, October 4, 2010

A “New” Venue for MDs, Sales Reps

Talk about unintended consequences. Even though some physicians and medical institutions may not welcome industry sales reps into their offices during business hours, they seem to have no problem getting together at educational events.

A recent survey found that 71% of those who shut their doors to sales reps while they are working will meet with them at these live events.

Pri-Med conducted the survey, which comprised 1,100 doctors who attended seven medical education meetings nationwide. Pri-Med says it’s about choice. Sam Bishop, director of research for Pri-Med, told Medical Marketing and Media that “[the physicians] have personally chosen to come to this event. If industry is there, the majority will choose to opt in. If they are in their practice, working with patients, struggling through the day, typically they don't want to be intruded on” in reference to the current rep calls that take place.  

Okay, maybe it’s about choice. But maybe it’s also about the need for physicians to learn about the R&D that industry is up to. And, maybe physicians don’t want to be hassled with new rules governing a rep in their office. Or, maybe they just want to chat with business associates who have become friends.

Humans are funny. If they don’t like a rule, they’ll find a way to work around it. The question is then, does industry still need more than 65,000 sales representatives in the U.S. detailing these doctors? 

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