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Longitudinal Study Highlights Evolving Role of Medical Science Liaisons with Thought Leaders and Product Development

CHAPEL HILL, N.C., March 1, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- While medical science liaisons have been around for more than 40 years, the role and activities of these medical specialists have grown quickly over the last decade. The pharmaceutical industry has long relied on medical science liaisons to forge relationships with key opinion leaders (KOLs) who can provide critical insights into the market and competition.

But the changing regulatory and access environment has altered the landscape for creating and maintaining KOL and physician relationships.

To help organizations navigate this new KOL landscape, research and consulting leader Best Practices LLC published a MSL-focused report that highlights their key pre- and post-launch activities, and service frequencies. The 78-page report presents 2011 data compared to 2009 on an array of critical activities that provide insights into how MSLs can build strong, productive relationships with KOLs and physicians. 

"Roles, Resourcing and Management of Medical Science Liaisons" provides MSL leaders with key metrics to help them create and maintain an effective MSL group. The comparative structure of the report (2011 data vs. 2009 data) also opens a window to emerging trends that will enable leaders in medical affairs – the group where MSL operations are typically housed - to set a clear direction for their MSL group going forward.

For instance, the study shows companies in 2011 were having managers oversee a greater number of MSLs than they did in 2009. In 2011, 57 percent of respondents preferred to have one manager overseeing 7-10 specialists. In 2009, the preferred span-of-control was one manger to up to six specialists (47 percent).

The key topics covered in this report include:

  • Benchmark Pre and Post-Launch Service Activities
  • Identify Drivers of Group Size & Focus
  • Gain insight into Structuring & Aligning Medical With Sales Organizations
  • Identify Optimal Call Frequencies and Service Levels with Thought Leaders
  • Identify Relationship Management Standards of Excellence
  • Value Associated with MSL
  • Budget Allocation to MSLs

The research project included observations and insights from 27 leaders with 24 companies, including 10 of the Top 20 pharma organizations. To learn more about this report, download a complimentary excerpt at

Best Practices, LLC is a leading benchmarking, consulting and advisory services firm serving biopharmaceutical and medical device companies worldwide. Best Practices, LLC's clients include all the top 10 and 48 of the top 50 global healthcare companies. The firm conducts primary research and consulting using its comprehensive proprietary benchmarking tools and analysis. The operational insights, findings and analysis form the basis for our Benchmarking Reports, databases and advisory services to support executives in commercial and R&D operations. Best Practices, LLC believes in the profound principle that organizations can chart a course to superior economic performance by studying the best business practices, operating tactics and winning strategies of world-class companies.

SOURCE Best Practices, LLC
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