Pharma Reps Struggle Gaining Access to Physicians

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Overall, 47% of prescribers were considered accessible in 2015 compared with 55 and 51% in 2013 and 2014, respectively.
Overall, 47% of prescribers were considered accessible in 2015 compared with 55 and 51% in 2013 and 2014, respectively.

HealthDay News -- Physician access for pharmaceutical representatives is continuing to decline, with access restricted to some degree for more than half of physicians, according to an AccessMonitor survey published by ZS.

Call reports from 70% of all U.S. pharmaceutical companies' sale representatives were analyzed. Overall, 47% of prescribers were considered accessible in 2015 compared with 55 and 51% in 2013 and 2014, respectively. Seventeen and 36% of physicians severely and moderately limited access, respectively, to the number of representatives allowed to visit them.

The percentage of accessible prescribers has been declining since 2008, when nearly 80% were considered accessible. A driving factor in access restrictions is consolidation among providers, which leads to centralized purchasing for an entire hospital or health system. Nineteen of the 25 health system mergers examined led to greater declines in physician access within 12 months. Among graduates from the top 12 U.S. medical schools, only 36% were considered accessible, compared with 43% from the top 50 medical schools and 48% from all other medical schools.

"Pharma companies may be losing their most effective tool, but they have other tools available -- they just need to become more at using them," according to the report.

Reference

1. Zsassociates.com. AccessMonitor 2015 Executive Summary | ZS Associates. 2015. Available at: http://www.zsassociates.com/publications/articles/AccessMonitor-2015-Executive-Summary.aspx. Accessed September 14, 2015.

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