The same survey found that seven percent of offices across all specialties ban reps; the prevalence of this varies across
the country. For example, in New Jersey, approximately six percent of medical offices refuse to see reps, while in Massachusetts,
that number is closer to 16 percent. In one extreme example, a New England rep carrying three widely different drugs reported
that 94 of 125 target physicians were not accessible. A 2004 survey conducted by PreferredTime found that of 5,475 offices
within the Northeast, nine percent had no-see policies in place.
Look Who´s Talking
Implications for Pharma
More efficient scheduling can help pharma promote its products more successfully. With fewer scheduling conflicts, reps can
avoid wasted trips to doctors' offices and long waits to see them. Plus, this gives them a competitive edge over other reps
who may be waiting in the parking lot or lobby to speak with the same physician. Further, streamlined scheduling allows reps
to organize their entire schedules from one source, which enables them to be effective immediately upon entering a new territory,
since their training need only comprise product knowledge rather than office idiosyncrasies.
The Future of Live Detailing
In the current medical office climate, live detailing faces a number of challenges and threats, including e-detailing, a Web-based
method of selling that replaces face-to-face interactions between reps and physicians.
However, better scheduling can restore faith in the live detail visit and reduce the frustrations associated with unscheduled
pharmaceutical rep visits. Reps can see time savings and improved relationships with physicians. Doctors, in turn, can devote
more time to patients, and in turn, will have a better attitude toward reps. With this infrastructure in place, the pharmaceutical
industry can function as it once did, sending skilled reps on successful sales calls that are well-received by physicians.
Stefania Nappi is CEO of PreferredTime, Inc. She can be reached at email@example.com
Briscoe Rodgers is president and founder of PreferredTime, Inc. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org