Given the scripted nature placed on pharma sales reps and their communication with doctors, do new technologies such as chat bots create the opportunity to deliver these messages in a better way?
Chatbots can provide a convenient and cost-effective way for doctors and pharma sales reps to communicate, enabling doctors to access the product information and other tools more easily that they need to deliver the best possible patient care.
Chatbots provide 24/7 availability and offer quick response times, allowing doctors to get information at any time without having to wait for a rep to answer a call or visit in person.
Chatbots can help improve access to medical information and advice for doctors in remote or underserved areas, where access to traditional pharma reps is limited.
Chatbots can reduce the costs associated with traditional forms of pharma communication, such as the need to have a large rep field force.
Bots can provide information and support in a scripted way, ensuring all communication is aligned to product guidelines
However, at least at this stage, bots are unlikely to completely replace the role of pharmaceutical representatives.
While bots can provide quick and easy access to information, they lack the ability to provide the personal touch and relationship-building that is critical.
Pharma reps often play a key role in building relationships and trust with healthcare professionals, which is essential in gaining their confidence and support for products.
Additionally, pharma reps can provide more in-depth information and answer complex questions that a bot may not be able to handle and can navigate objections and provide tailored solutions. This includes leveraging MSLs and KOLs in better supporting the doctor with the information they need.
It is also worth noting that the pharmaceutical industry is heavily regulated, and bots may not be able to comply with all the regulatory requirements for information sharing and communication. At least, not yet.
In conclusion, while bots can provide a useful tool for providing information and support in the pharmaceutical industry, they are unlikely to completely replace the role of pharmaceutical representatives, as the personal touch, relationship building, and regulatory compliance are essential elements of the job.
However, as technology continues to advance, it is likely that chatbots will become increasingly integrated into the practice of medicine, and more pharma companies and doctors will come to appreciate their potential benefits.
70% of this article was created through ChatGPT – what was our experience?
It took time asking multiple questions and providing the level of feedback to help it learn, however quite quickly ChatGPT was able to create a very helpful first draft although not all the points were relevant and it felt very formulaic, so it did require reworking beyond just editing to get to this final published article.