The New Age-Old Question: How to Prove Medical Science Liaison Value?

Natalie DeMasi, clinical development and medical affairs researcher
By Natalie DeMasi,
Senior Research Analyst

It’s a common question at conferences, business meetings and even on social media: What key performance indicators (KPIs) should medical science liaisons (MSLs) track to prove value?  When I ask medical affairs executives this question, I get a variety of answers, but they usually begin in the same way – with a sigh and “that’s a good question.”  Through all of this muddle, however, some MSL teams have devised satisfactory methods to prove their worth to upper management. Continue reading


Recap: Medical Affairs Launch Planning Webinar

Natalie DeMasi, clinical development and medical affairs researcher
By Natalie DeMasi,
Senior Research Analyst

Medical affairs is on the front lines of a product launch.  During this crucial launch window, medical affairs is responsible for raising awareness, educating stakeholders and all-around readying the healthcare community.  These tasks make medical affairs a cornerstone of product success.  However, medical affairs teams are only as effective as their product launch plan, as poor timing or a sub-par strategy can diminish their impact. Continue reading




Medical Publications Teams Begin Activities As Early As Pre-Clinical

Natalie DeMasi, clinical development and medical affairs researcher
By Natalie DeMasi,
Senior Research Analyst

Medical publications groups are the forerunners of product success.  The clinical development team spends years testing a potential product and collecting data about its efficacy and safety.  But, the medical publications team has the privilege of formulating these findings into articles and disseminating them via journals.  In fact, medical publications teams are so vital that surveyed global medical affairs teams allocate an average 14% of their budgets to medical publications. Continue reading


The Next Medical Affairs Innovation: Patient-Centricity

Natalie DeMasi, clinical development and medical affairs researcher
By Natalie DeMasi,
Senior Research Analyst

Over the last decade, medical affairs has been transitioning from an offshoot of marketing into an independent function that is vital in its own right.  As a part of this transformation, medical affairs teams have found ways to innovate — going above and beyond to bring the most value to healthcare stakeholders and the internal organization.  Cutting Edge Information’s new medical affairs report uncovered many new medical affairs innovations, and one of the most exciting trends is a drive towards patient centricity. Continue reading


Medical Science Liaisons: Case Studies for Promoting Interteam Communication

Natalie DeMasi, clinical development and medical affairs researcher
By Natalie DeMasi,
Senior Research Analyst

Medical science liaisons (MSLs) have all types of interesting, difficult and/or successful encounters with healthcare providers (HCPs).  MSLs can learn from hearing each other’s stories and together create best practices for overcoming challenging situations — and not just MSLs that are on the same team but MSLs throughout the entire company.  Despite the benefits of these conversations, 39% of surveyed MSL teams face challenges with internal communication (Figure 1). Continue reading


Recent Rate Card Sampling Shows Life Science Teams Reimburse KOLs at Similar Rates

Sarah Ray, regulatory affairs and safety researcher
By Sarah Ray,
Senior Research Analyst

Life science teams enact a number of strategies to assure fair market value (FMV) rates when compensating industry key opinion leaders (KOLs).  The rate cards that these pharmaceutical and device teams develop include payment ranges for advisory board and speaker programs, among other medical affairs activities.  In some cases, these rates are determined on an hourly basis.  In others, rates are capped at a pre-determined maximum, flat rate.  Continue reading


Medical Information Call Centers: Establish Clear Processes for Adverse Event Reporting

Natalie DeMasi, clinical development and medical affairs researcher
By Natalie DeMasi,
Senior Research Analyst

Pharma medical information call centers bear a number of responsibilities beyond answering stakeholder questions about products.  For instance, call center agents may recruit for clinical trials and respond to internal literature requests.  Another vital call center role — conducted by 63% of surveyed teams — is reporting adverse events (AEs). Continue reading


Supporting Investigator-Initiated Trials: Develop IIT Management Team Numbers In-Line with Centralization Practices

Sarah Ray, regulatory affairs and safety researcher
By Sarah Ray,
Senior Research Analyst

Investigator-initiated trials (IITs) are developed and executed under the direction of third-party clinical investigators.  However, life science teams often require ample in-house teams to support these activities from start to finish. Dedicated teams handle tasks such as managing online investigator portals and reviewing IIT submissions. Continue reading