Reps Wield iPADs, But Most Docs Not Impressed

Reps Wield iPADs, But Most Docs Not Impressed

August 10th, 2011 // 1:11 pm @

The iPAD may be the hot device for sales reps, but most physicians are not so enchanted when the devices are whipped out during presentations. In fact, only 36 percent of 1,755 physicians surveyed who talk to reps with iPads or other tablets find the experience to be more beneficial than speaking with reps who use print materials or devices, such as laptops, according to Manhattan Research.

“iPads are all the rage for pharma at the moment, which makes sense given the potential of these devices to support intelligent, nimble sales conversations,” says Manhattan Research vp Monique Levy in a statement. “Unfortunately, some of the detailing programs that are being rushed out the door are sub-par – really no better than something you’d see on tablet PCs six years ago. Doctors won’t waste their time with these.”


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Overall, 38 percent of the physicians surveyed – and these are all docs who already interact with pharma by using some form of digital communication – have seen a pharma or biotech rep use an iPad or other tablet during a face-to-face meeting in the 12-month period ending in June.

Not surprisingly, the value varies by specialty: General surgeons, infectious disease or HIV physicians, anesthesiologists and OB/GYNs are the specialty groups that are most likely to agree sales reps should use iPads or other tablets for product discussions during office visits. In contrast, rheumatologists and dermatologists are less inclined to feel that tablets are needed for rep meetings.

More specifically, 52 percent of general surgeons prefer that reps use iPADs, followed by 48 percent of infectious disease specialists or HIV physicians. Trailing them were anesthesiologists at 44 percent and obstetricians and gynecologists at 39 percent. At the bottom of the list – just one in five dermatologists are pleased when reps flash their iPADs.

By the way, the survey found that drugmakers with the highest reach – when based on reps wielding iPADs – are Pfizer, AstraZeneca, Merck and Abbott Laboratories. Novartis ceo Joe Jimenez may be thrilled with iPADs, but so far, his enthusiasm doesn’t appear to have translated into meaningful results.

Source: Pharmalot

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