Corante

About this Author
DBL%20Hendrix%20small.png College chemistry, 1983

Derek Lowe The 2002 Model

Dbl%20new%20portrait%20B%26W.png After 10 years of blogging. . .

Derek Lowe, an Arkansan by birth, got his BA from Hendrix College and his PhD in organic chemistry from Duke before spending time in Germany on a Humboldt Fellowship on his post-doc. He's worked for several major pharmaceutical companies since 1989 on drug discovery projects against schizophrenia, Alzheimer's, diabetes, osteoporosis and other diseases. To contact Derek email him directly: derekb.lowe@gmail.com Twitter: Dereklowe

Chemistry and Drug Data: Drugbank
Emolecules
ChemSpider
Chempedia Lab
Synthetic Pages
Organic Chemistry Portal
PubChem
Not Voodoo
DailyMed
Druglib
Clinicaltrials.gov

Chemistry and Pharma Blogs:
Org Prep Daily
The Haystack
Kilomentor
A New Merck, Reviewed
Liberal Arts Chemistry
Electron Pusher
All Things Metathesis
C&E News Blogs
Chemiotics II
Chemical Space
Noel O'Blog
In Vivo Blog
Terra Sigilatta
BBSRC/Douglas Kell
ChemBark
Realizations in Biostatistics
Chemjobber
Pharmalot
ChemSpider Blog
Pharmagossip
Med-Chemist
Organic Chem - Education & Industry
Pharma Strategy Blog
No Name No Slogan
Practical Fragments
SimBioSys
The Curious Wavefunction
Natural Product Man
Fragment Literature
Chemistry World Blog
Synthetic Nature
Chemistry Blog
Synthesizing Ideas
Business|Bytes|Genes|Molecules
Eye on FDA
Chemical Forums
Depth-First
Symyx Blog
Sceptical Chymist
Lamentations on Chemistry
Computational Organic Chemistry
Mining Drugs
Henry Rzepa


Science Blogs and News:
Bad Science
The Loom
Uncertain Principles
Fierce Biotech
Blogs for Industry
Omics! Omics!
Young Female Scientist
Notional Slurry
Nobel Intent
SciTech Daily
Science Blog
FuturePundit
Aetiology
Gene Expression (I)
Gene Expression (II)
Sciencebase
Pharyngula
Adventures in Ethics and Science
Transterrestrial Musings
Slashdot Science
Cosmic Variance
Biology News Net


Medical Blogs
DB's Medical Rants
Science-Based Medicine
GruntDoc
Respectful Insolence
Diabetes Mine


Economics and Business
Marginal Revolution
The Volokh Conspiracy
Knowledge Problem


Politics / Current Events
Virginia Postrel
Instapundit
Belmont Club
Mickey Kaus


Belles Lettres
Uncouth Reflections
Arts and Letters Daily
In the Pipeline: Don't miss Derek Lowe's excellent commentary on drug discovery and the pharma industry in general at In the Pipeline

In the Pipeline

« Another Set of Eyes | Main | Pyridines and Dichloromethane »

May 19, 2010

Manning the Phones

Email This Entry

Posted by Derek

I don't cover the sales-force side of the drug industry very much - there's always CafePharma, you know, assuming that your company's firewall lets you visit the site. (As far as I know, this one gets in everywhere, in case anyone's wondering).

But this headline is an eyebrow-raiser: AstraZeneca seems to have been replacing most (perhaps all) of its sales-rep activity for Nexium to. . .call centers. And it seems to have worked. (The sales reps themselves were redeployed to other medications).

They're looking at trying this for other "mature" drug brands that already have years of sales push behind them - and considering the cost-cutting environment that we're in these days, I would guess that other companies are watching this experiment with great interest.

Comments (4) + TrackBacks (0) | Category: Business and Markets


COMMENTS

1. Hap on May 19, 2010 11:17 AM writes...

Boy, I'm glad I'm on the Do-Not-Call list. I wonder, though, how many doctors could avoid these calls this way - while I might not want to hear about Nexium [look, a slightly modified generic (that's a top tier drug if it's covered at all by patients' drug plans)!], I might want to hear about other drugs that AZ might want me to use, and if DNCing them prevents me from hearing about them, I might be hesitant to do so.

Of course, since they're farming the calls to telespammers....errr, call centers, I don't know if a doctor would expect to get anything useful from the calls, anyway. Ooooh, look, another toll-free call. Say hello to my voice mail.

Permalink to Comment

2. Sili on May 19, 2010 12:03 PM writes...

I guess it'd be naïve to hope that this'd reduce undue influence of reps on GPs.

Permalink to Comment

3. John Spevacek on May 19, 2010 1:04 PM writes...

"As far as I know, this one gets in everywhere, in case anyone's wondering"

Sadly, I have to inform you otherwise. A client where I spend a lot of time and have access to their computers, has recently started block ALL BLOG ACCESS - not just for posting, but also for reading. Apparently their IT department doesn't know about RSS readers (or maybe they haven't gotten around to blocking that route just yet).

Permalink to Comment

4. anonymous on May 19, 2010 8:31 PM writes...

Call centers aren't all bad. Outbound
telemarketing and ADMRs (those nasty voice
call spam machines politicians are so fond
of) are truly vile.

Inbound customer service isn't a bad thing
- as long as there are no endless menus of
"press this button to do that now": stupid
interactive voice response machines that
don't understand anything other than yes
or no:, interminable hold featuring advertising, awful music, and lies about how much the company
cares about its customers...

Anyone willing to bet that AZ will farm out
their call center work offshore?

@John Spevacek - try a proxy server or see if
you can get to your preferred sites by https -
companies can't block https traffic, and I've
not heard of any traffic shaping device that
will selectively block it, either.

Permalink to Comment

POST A COMMENT




Remember Me?



EMAIL THIS ENTRY TO A FRIEND

Email this entry to:

Your email address:

Message (optional):




RELATED ENTRIES
The Worst Seminar
Conference in Basel
Messed-Up Clinical Studies: A First-Hand Report
Pharma and Ebola
Lilly Steps In for AstraZeneca's Secretase Inhibitor
Update on Alnylam (And the Direction of Things to Come)
There Must Have Been Multiple Chances to Catch This
Weirdly, Tramadol Is Not a Natural Product After All