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                    Vantage Point
                    BY RICHARD B. VANDERVEER, PHD
                                                           Docs go from bedside
                 Despite a 2009 that both sides of the
                                                           manner to biz manager
                 healthcare marketing research table       PhARMAS, AND their sales
would readily admit was less than uplifting, PMRG          reps, need to understand the
                                                           health economics of a product
attracted several hundred people to its fall event in      in differing contexts, according
Philadelphia. Especially encouraging was the client        to panelists at the Pharmaceuti-
turnout, indicating that pharma marketing research-        cal Marketing Research Group’s
                                                           (PMRG) third annual meeting.
ers continue to find value in attending.                      Concomitant evolutions—in
  A number of other good things happened at                payer structure, the physician’s
PMRG. Let me highlight two. First, I would like to         ability to influence the decision
                                                           about what is prescribed, and
congratulate my colleague, Susan Schwartz McDon-
                                                           managed care decisions—all
ald, PhD, president and CEO, National Analysts             effect the way brands should be       Gray: reps must be informed
Worldwide, for receiving the RR Fordyce Award for          marketed, said Matt Gray, brand       about a product’s outcomes
                                                           insight director, cornerstone
her contributions to our profession. She has been,
                                                           business unit, at AstraZeneca.        said that while a focus on com-
and remains, an intellectual leader in our field, a        “A front desk person does a lot       parative effectiveness and the
staunch advocate of our specialty in the broader field     more than what they used to do”       science behind products is
                             of marketing research,        in terms of decision-making, said     important, a lot of decisions are
                                                           Gray, a former sales rep.             still made “outside of the algo-
The healthcare               someone who is not               “For us to keep walking in         rithm.” Ted Lawrence, CEO at
marketing model              afraid to appear in court     and saying ‘our product is bet-       Lawrence & Company, added
                                                           ter than Y,’” is insufficient, said   that product economics aren’t
needs a major                to apply her expertise
                                                           Gray, adding that reps must be        the last word, since if that were
overhaul and must assisting litigants who she              able to talk about how a product      the case, “all hospital formularies
separate itself              believes are right, and a     can be obtained—via formulary      
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