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Physicians Not on the Move


A new study indicates that doctors are no longer switching offices - largely due to current economic woes. What does this mean for sales reps? Pharm Exec interviews SK&A to find out more about its survey.

Physicians aren’t leaving their posts for greener pastures-at least not as often as they used to-according to a new survey by SK&A, a subsidiary of Cegedim.

The study looked at 86 physician specialties and the rate at which they change positions, leave a practice, retire, or die. The average move rate for all physicians in the past three years is 15.2 percent. However, the number has dropped from 18.2 percent in 2008 to 12.4 percent in 2010, a sizeable decrease in a very short span.

SK&A is attributing the slow down to the recession, first and foremost. “People, in general, are less likely to make a move or take a risk, and that includes physicians,” SK&A’s Director of Marketing Jack Schember told Pharm Exec. “We also believe that physicians are working longer, fewer are retiring, and they want to shore up their retirement plan before they move.”

Overall, physicians are migrating to more stable, salaried positions inside of large medical groups and companies that are backed by hospitals. General practitioners are more likely

“There is a shift away from solo practices to group and partnership-type practices,” Schember said.

This is good news for pharmaceutical and medical device companies that have a difficult time trying to keep track of the physicians they send their sales reps to. An empty office is a waste of time, gas, and potential prescriptions written.

“This calls for the need to be constantly aware of the quality of physician databases,” Schember said. “Pharma must be cognoscent of changes.”

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