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Inaugural Harris Poll Physician Pulse(SM) Study: Viagra® and Cialis® are Highest Ranked in Trust
Date:5/8/2012

NEW YORK, May 8, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- According to the inaugural Harris Poll Physician Pulse(SM) study of American physicians' prescribing behaviors and influences, Viagra® and Cialis® are the top-ranked pharmaceutical treatments in terms of trust. In fact, the three erectile dysfunction (ED) brands, also including Levitra®, received some of the highest scores across all of the following categories surveyed: Anti-depressants (ADP); Anti-psychotics (APS); Erectile Dysfunction (ED); and Non-insulin Diabetes Treatments (NID).     

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The Harris Poll Physician Pulse(SM) study asks primary-care physicians and specialists, including psychiatrists, urologists and endocrinologists, about their prescribing behaviors and ranks key pharmaceutical treatments, based on the Harris Poll multi-dimensional Trust Index. This index measures the five key components of physician trust and, based on the study results, is shown to be highly predictive of prescribing intent. The components of the Harris Poll Trust Index relate to the drug itself (Familiarity, Function, and Connection) as well as to the pharmaceutical organization (Company and Representatives).

In this first quarterly study on product-level trust among prescribers, four key, high-volume prescription categories were studied: Anti-depressants (ADP); Anti-psychotics (APS); Erectile Dysfunction (ED); and Non-insulin Diabetes Treatments (NID).  The top-ranked brands that are at or above the average in each category, with a maximum score of 100 are:

  • Lexapro® (74) for ADP, followed by Cymbalta® (72), then Wellbutrin XL® (71);
  • Abilify® (74) for APS, with Seroquel® (73) nipping at its heels, then Geodon® (67);
  • Viagra® and Cialis® tie for highest ranked in ED (82); and,
  • Glucophage® XR (77) is top for NID, with Januvia® (73) and Victoza® (71) ranking behind.

These results are good news for pharmaceutical companies, who must thrive in this highly competitive market.  Bristol-Myers Squibb Company has two of the highest ranked products, Glucophage® XR and Abilify®, with Abilify® co-promoted through Otsuka America Pharmaceuticals Inc.  Additionally, Forest Laboratories Inc., Eli Lilly and Company, and Pfizer Inc. each have one top-ranked treatment, Lexapro®, Cialis®, and Viagra®, respectively.   

"Physicians have made it clear that trust is important to them," said Joseph Vorrasi, Senior Vice President of Healthcare Research at Harris Interactive.  "The pharmaceutical treatments that rate well across the five key factors of Trust are in a much better position to be written and recommended by physicians.  We look forward to expanding and validating this model across more than 20 additional therapeutic categories in the next year."

Unexpected Finding: Doctors are not as "clinical" as we think

One of the most compelling findings of the Harris Poll Physician Pulse(SM) trust model is the role of emotional connection in the overall trust of pharmaceutical brands.  In fact, the study finds that the influence of Connection is on a par with Function and Familiarity in terms of driving brand trust among prescribers.  This significant finding about the importance of emotional connection to the prescription medication was consistent across all therapeutic categories and among primary care physicians and specialists alike.

"We tend to think of doctors as completely driven by fact-based approaches, where a formulaic mapping of symptoms, history, and treatment options determines what they prescribe," says Vorrasi.  "While that is generally true, physicians also are influenced by the softer, more emotional elements of the treatments they prescribe.  This unconscious effect is actually very similar to the emotional relationship we see among consumers as they make important purchase decisions.  The bottom line is that emotional connection with brands matters in the pharmaceutical realm as well."

The Harris Poll Physician Pulse(SM) study results demonstrate that the Harris Poll Trust Index is highly predictive of prescribing and endorsing behaviors and gives significant insight into how physicians make trust-based decisions.  These insights help pharmaceutical companies identify where and how they can significantly impact levels of trust physicians possess for their products. The Harris Poll Physician Pulse(SM) trust model was built on decades of physician research and is ground-breaking in its exploration of how trust drives prescribing behavior.

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About Harris Poll Physician Pulse(SM)
Harris Interactive conducted a 20-minute, online survey among U.S. physicians February 17 – 27, 2012. A total of 759 respondents were recruited from the Harris Physician Panel, including 358 Primary Care Physicians and 401 Specialists (192 Psychiatrists, 101 Urologists and 108 Endocrinologists).

Quotas were set to ensure a minimum of 200 physicians (100 PCPs and 100 specialists) were aware of each brand and therefore would be able to answer the questions related to their areas of expertise.  Other controls were put in place to ensure accuracy, such as requiring physicians to be licensed in the state where they are practicing, and that they meet the specific patient criteria, as appropriate.  Data were weighted to be representative of category prescribing behavior.

A full listing of the pharmaceutical treatments that performed above the category average in their respective categories can be found here.

These statements conform to the principles of disclosure of the National Council on Public Polls.

The Harris Poll Physician Pulse(SM) study results disclosed in this release may not be used for advertising, marketing or promotional purposes without the prior written consent of Harris Interactive.

Product and brand names are trademarks or registered trademarks of their respective owners.

For a complete listing of all the treatments covered in the study, contact Dagney Cassella at 212-539-9600 or dcassella@harrisinteractive.com.

About Harris Interactive
Harris Interactive is one of the world's leading custom and syndicated market research firms, leveraging research, technology, and business acumen to transform relevant insight into actionable foresight. Known widely for the Harris Poll® and for pioneering innovative research methodologies, Harris offers proprietary solutions in the areas of market and customer insight, corporate brand and reputation strategy, and marketing, advertising, public relations and communications research. Harris possesses expertise in a wide range of industries including health care, technology, public affairs, energy, telecommunications, financial services, insurance, media, retail, restaurant, and consumer package goods. Additionally, Harris has a portfolio of syndicated offerings that complement our custom solutions while maximizing our client's research investment.  Serving clients in more than 215 countries and territories through our North American and European offices and a network of global partners, Harris specializes in delivering research solutions that help us - and our clients - stay ahead of what's next. For more information, please visit www.harrisinteractive.com.


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