Monday, January 26, 2009

Less Reps and DTC: More Retention Programs

Patient retention budgets seem to be growing as DTC and sales force spending contracts. The number of working sales reps in the US dropped below 93,000 in 2008, from an all-time high of 102,000 in 2005, according to an SDI report. Numbers are expected to decline further in 2009. DTC spending has also been targeted: Manufacturers spent 4% less ($3.69 billion) on consumer advertising during the first three quarters of 2008, down from $3.86 billion over the same period in 2007, according to Nielsen. Meanwhile, over a dozen major brands are making inroads with novel patient retention programs that leverage pharmacies, adherence counsellors and reminder programs.