New product launches can double a medical affairs team’s financial resources at some biopharmaceutical companies, according to new data published by Cutting Edge Information. Medical affairs teams play a key role in any product launch success. However, these product launches impact companies differently depending on their existing brand portfolios.
The data in “Medical Affairs: Resource Allocation for the Global Marketplace” reveal that, regardless of the company size, medical affairs departments must allocate additional resources to support a product well before its expected approval date. When large companies launch products, the medical affairs resources often shift from older to newer brands. Conversely, smaller companies may have to formally build new departments, such as their first medical science liaison team, when launching a new product.
One profiled pharmaceutical company’s medical affairs team begins reaching out to external stakeholders approximately two years before a product’s expected launch date. The company’s medical teams stay busy talking to physicians — either through advisory boards or at medical congresses — about the disease area’s unmet needs, different classes of products and they also try to learn about future patient needs.
Even before a product has an expected approval date, companies that are launching their first product, or product in a new therapeutic area, seek to add new MSL’s to their team. These liaisons require plenty of time to both learn the new product’s scientific platform and also build relationships with key opinion leaders. One surveyed company in the study nearly doubled its MSL team by pulling them from other therapeutic areas to focus on its new diabetes drug.
“Medical Affairs: Resource Allocation for the Global Marketplace” (http://www.cuttingedgeinfo.com/research/medical-affairs/global-resource-allocation/) features detailed data on optimal medical affairs structure and best practices for cross-functional communication with clinical and marketing teams. The research also includes four years of medical affairs budget data for the overall medical affairs function. Use this report to:
• Strengthen medical affairs structure, staffing and support within pharmaceutical or device company
• Empower medical affairs teams via adequate budget and staffing resources prior to product launch
• Position health economics teams under the medical affairs umbrella to optimize access to vital information