SK&A Releases Updated Physician Access Study
March 15, 2010
PHYSICIANS VISITED BY UP TO 20 SALES REPS WEEKLY. NEARLY HALF REQUIRE OR PREFER APPOINTMENTS TO BE SET BY PHARMACEUTICAL AND MEDICAL DEVICE SALES REPS
Irvine, CA – According to an updated report released today by SK&A, A Cegedim Company, 98 percent of physicians say their offices are visited by up to 20 sales reps each week from the pharmaceutical or medical device industries, with nearly half of the physicians surveyed saying they require or prefer appointments to be made by reps prior to one-on-one meetings.
These findings are available in SK&A’s latest Physician Access study, an ongoing survey of U.S. medical offices to determine policies for allowing healthcare industry sales-rep access to physicians and other prescribers. SK&A has been measuring industry access to physicians since June 2007. The recent study is based on telephone interviews with 213,616 medical sites representing 632,000 physicians. SK&A surveys its Office-Based Physician database every six months from its Research Center in Irvine, California.
“SK&A’s commitment to measuring sales rep access to physicians has highlighted some very important trends over the years,” said Dave Escalante, SK&A Vice President of Data and Information Solutions. “Over the past year, access to physicians has stabilized overall, indicating there is a right mix of personal and non-personal promotion available to businesses wishing to reach physicians in medical offices. Most important, through SK&A, sales and marketing executives have the data and insight into channel preferences for their physician targets to help build the right multi-channel strategy to ensure business success.”
The percent of physicians who require or prefer appointments has increased significantly in the past year, from 38.5 percent in December 2008 to 49.6 percent in December 2009, according to the survey. The number of physicians who restrict access altogether has remained unchanged in the past 12 months at about 23 percent.
Other significant trends found within the report include:
- Specialty physicians are less likely to grant sales reps access than general practitioners. The top-three accessible physicians are allergists/immunologists (4.4% no-see rate), diabetes specialists (7%) and gynecologists (7.5%). The least accessible physicians are diagnostic radiologists (91.8% no-see rate), pathologists (91.7%) and neuroradiologists (91.5%).
- Offices with fewer patients seen daily are less likely to host sales reps. Sites with a daily patient volume of one to 10 have a no-access rate of 28.9 percent and those with a daily patient volume of 31-40 have a 13.6 percent no-access rate.
- Health system- and hospital-owned offices are less likely to grant sales reps access than offices not part of a health system or owned by a hospital. Health system- and hospital-owned offices have no-access rates of 30.3 percent and 29.5 percent, respectively. Non- health system and hospital-owned offices have no-access rates of 21.5 percent each.
- Larger practices are less likely to grant sales reps access. Offices with one to two physicians have a no-access rate of 13.4 percent while offices with 10 or more physicians have a no-access rate of 42.1 percent.
- Physician offices in the Western U.S. are least likely to allow sales reps access. The South had the lowest no-access rate with 19.4 percent, and the West had a 28.2 percent no-access rate.
The Physician Access report is available to help healthcare marketers and sales executives in appointment setting and connecting face-to-face with physicians. Custom reports based on geography, specialty, office size, patient volume and practice ownership are available for sale upon request.
Editor’s Note: For a copy of the summary findings for publication, please contact Jack Schember, SK&A Director of Marketing, at 800-752-5478, ext. 1259.