In a recent study, a sampling of pharmaceutical companies participating in social media rated Facebook and Youtube as the most impactful social media channels. Survey takers were asked to rate the level of impact of various social media outlets on their pharma digital marketing efforts. Ratings were measured on a scale from one to five, with five representing the largest impact. As the accompanying figure shows, both Facebook and Youtube received average ratings of 3.8 out of 5. Continue reading
Medical publications remain an important consideration for companies’ dedicated and non-dedicated medical affairs staff. Earlier this year, Cutting Edge Information conducted a study examining companies’ guiding medical publication strategies and their annual output patterns.
Figure 1 shows that the highest percentage of surveyed companywide, business unit and country-level teams ranked the following as extremely relevant publication goals: Continue reading
Dealing with regulatory agencies to earn product approvals can prove quite difficult for life sciences companies. Some representatives can be quite passionate about their therapeutic area which can affect their judgment, for instance. In other instances, one investigator can simply prove more difficult than others.
To respond, pharmaceutical and other life sciences companies use several strategies to handle working with difficult regulators, according to Cutting Edge Information’s conversations with regulatory affairs executives. Open communication with the regulator assigned to a product is absolutely essential — and should begin early in the development process. By openly communicating with agencies early on in the development process, companies can seek input from the individual responsible for reviewing the product. This communication ensures that there are no surprises on either side and that potential misunderstandings can be addressed promptly. Continue reading
As investigational drugs and devices move into larger and more complex trials, a growing variety of roles are involved in ensuring that clinical trials continue to run smoothly. Cutting Edge Information’s oncology trials report focuses on how companies’ staffing roles — including data managers, statisticians and regulatory staffing — evolve to provide key clinical support. Although each role is significant, the importance of the clinical research associate (CRA) stands out, in the opinion of clinical development executives. In a word, CRAs are the jacks-of-all trades whose familiarity with trial protocols and previous clinical experience can prove instrumental in the success of a new product’s clinical trials. Using their knowledge of Good Clinical Practices, CRAs can drive trial progress by facilitating sponsor-site communications and acting in a troubleshooting capacity, should specific challenges arise. Continue reading
It’s no secret that our communication practices continually evolve to match our communication capabilities. Why write a letter when you can make a phone call? Or call when you can send an email or text message? Why not use any number of social channels to reach out to, not just people you know, but the companies that you support? Medical information teams must now take on the daunting task of meeting customers — both patients and physicians — where they operate, while still remaining compliant.
Many pharma companies’ medical information teams receive requests via a number of different channels, including telephone, email, social media and fax. Physicians may also submit inquiries through intermediaries such as sales reps and medical science liaisons (MSLs). While traditional channels — telephone and reps — remain prominent, digital channels are gaining traction. One interviewed call center manager noted, “I’d say that just as recently as 3 or 4 years ago, three-fourths of our medical inquiries came in on fax or letter or phone call. Now I’d say that over two-thirds come in by email.” Continue reading
Managed markets groups, like most commercial functions, see their activities peak around product launch as they try to make sure products reach as many consumers as possible. The managed markets account manager role generally continues well after launch as competitors change and new data emerge.
In a study conducted recently here at Cutting Edge Information, we found that for a significant number of companies the product support role for account managers never ends. While most companies will begin to stop talking to payers about products around or before patent expiry, some companies with specialized products see value in continuing these discussions even after the product has lost market exclusivity. Continue reading
When a drug first hits the market, lifecycle management (LCM) teams have a host of weapons in their arsenal to increase market share. As that same drug approaches patent expiry, the choices become more limited. But all hope is not lost! Here are three late-stage pharma lifecycle management tactics highlighted in our new report with a track-record of success:
- Pediatric exclusivity
- Strategic pricing
- Medical publications
Ever since the FDA and EMA each released separate position papers, sponsors and CROs alike have been focused on implementing risk-based monitoring (RBM) strategies, rather than performing traditional monitoring for each of their clinical trials. And why not? A look at the costs and benefits of traditional site monitoring activities shows that these two metrics do not always align favorably. According to an article published in Perspectives in Clinical Research, clinical site monitoring accounts for “30% of total clinical trial cost.” However, the same article estimates that the source data verification (SDV) that CRAs conduct during these in-person site visits account for “less than 3% of data changes performed after CRA visits.” If there’s no discernible benefit for sponsors and CROs to visit sites more often, it follows that companies would look to reduce the number of in-person site visits they schedule by using risk-based monitoring strategies instead. Continue reading
As life sciences companies cultivate a more global reach, the medical information function must also grow to span worldwide operations. For many companies, this means maintaining a number of medical information groups — including both a global function and localized teams, in addition to a more established call center system. The ways in which these global, regional and country-level teams work together drive team activities and also determine pharmaceutical call center structure. Continue reading
One of the interesting trends over the past few years for those of us watching the pharmaceutical industry is how companies are turning increasingly to specialization within their portfolios. Pharmaceutical divestitures are continuing at breakneck pace as companies look to shed products that fall outside primary business interests and scour the market for products or pipelines that match up with development priorities. So why is this happening now and how will it further shape the industry? Continue reading