The Role of Medical Representatives Are Recognized by Clinicians


The Survey Results of the First “Cognition Degree from Clinicians on Specialization Degree and Specialized Training of Medical Representatives” are announced  


 [June 19, 2009, Beijing] Chinese Medical Doctor Association (CMDA) held a workshop on the survey results of “Cognition Degree of Clinicians on Specialization Degree and Specialized Training of Medical Representatives”, announcing the smooth completion of the research project. It is the first extensive investigation launched on cognition degree and acceptance degree to medical representatives from clinicians and hospital managers.
 The investigation team has carried out an in-depth communication with interviewed clinicians and hospital managers on “the role of medical representatives”, “way and prerequisite of good communication”, “content, role and significance of special training for medical representatives” and other issues. As introduced by Director Yang Wenlin from Chinese Medical Doctor Association (CMDA), the clinicians have deepened the cognition to medical representatives in job nature, job content and specialization degree, better understanding and higher requirement to the specialized training of medical representatives. The clinicians generally believed that, among the measures to improve the integral level of medical representatives, making medical representatives receive training in professional knowledge and communication skill is the most essential and effective way, in which the most important is training in pharmaceutical and medical knowledge. The survey results also indicated that medical representatives of foreign-funded enterprises have been fully recognized by clinicians in aspects such as “understand product features and information”, “grasp fundamental medical knowledge and industry trend”, “good personal quality” etc. Most of interviewed clinicians consider that, except drug sale,  medical representatives should assume multiple duties, especially hoping medical representatives can improve their work and provide more pharmaceutical services to clinicians in “delivering information in an objective and scientific way”, “normalized promotion behaviors” and “taking care to collect information on drug use and adverse events” etc. 
 According to Doctor Wei Cuibai, director-general of Neurologists Branch under the CMDA, neurologist of Xuanwu Hospital, “To improve diagnosis and treatment level for an clinician, he/she needs to learn more about drug safety, effectiveness and information on route of administration, so medical representatives should provide more professional pharmaceutical services. Academic conference is a better and effective way of communication, but the professional level for medical representatives is also important. Good medical representatives can usually deliver the information in an objective and accurate way.” Academician Zhang Jinzhe from Beijing Childrens Hospital mentioned in his speech, “In order to address the threat of disease to human health, clinicians urgently need to obtain information on drug safety and effectiveness from R&D-based pharmaceutical enterprises and feed back the drug adverse reaction events to pharmaceutical enterprises. The medical representatives are just a bridge of information communication between clinicians and enterprises. We hope the occupational social value of two-way information communication for medical representatives to be given better play”. Du Wenmin, deputy director of the Science and Technology Information Institute under Shanghai Food and Drug Administration, executive deputy director of Shanghai Adverse Drug Reaction Monitoring Center further stated, “Only with smooth communication between clinicians and enterprises can both sides work together to benefit the patients and reduce drug adverse action events from the source. The job of medical representatives is important and significant.”
 In the opinion of Cai Zhongjun, vice president of CMDA, “the professional behavior norms of medical representatives should also be normalized and transparent. For medical representative, what they need to do is open promotion rather than by other approaches. In this regard, RDPAC has set a good example.” Mr. Liu Zhenxian, executive president of RDPAC said, “Drug, as a kind of special goods, the sales persons need to possess a certain amount of professional knowledge. Only like this can they assist medical institutions to use drug properly. Internationally, medical representative as an occupation has a development history of over 30 years. Medical representatives should not only improve their professional level and their professional integrity for academic promotion is also important. RDPAC has already launched a professional training program for medical representatives within all the member companies so as to make medical representatives receive training in specialty and self-discipline, improve their professional level in medicine and pharmacy and normalize their behaviors by “Code of Practice for Drug Promotion”. As an occupation admittance requirement, the specialized training for medical representatives launched by RDPAC has important social meaning.” The clinicians to be surveyed all identified with the program of “professional training for medical representatives” launched within RDPAC.
 The aforesaid survey was performed by the third party survey agency entrusted by CMDA. It lasted for more than 5 months, which were divided into such two stages as quantitative survey and qualitative survey. The respondents involved more than 50 hospitals of different levels in nearly 30 provinces and municipalities of China. Nearly a thousand copies of questionnaire were finally reclaimed. The survey is the first program on cognition degree and acceptance degree to medical representatives from clinicians around the country so far, which featured wide range of survey and numerous respondents.
 The relevant leaders from the Ministry of Health, the Center for Training of the State Food and Drug Administration and Occupational Skill Evaluation Center of the Ministry of Human Resources and Social Security attended the workshop. Wang Huanzeng, vice president and secretary-general of Chinese Association for Promotion on Health Ideology and Culture (CAPHIC), Wu Chongqi, vice chairman of the World Medical Law Society, vice president and  secretary-general of the China Health Law Society, Liu Gexin, director of the Health Law Research Center of School of Law under China University of Political Science and Law, Wu Shizheng, head of Qinghai Provincial People’s Hospital, and, Li Ruijie, head of No. 2 Hospital, Chaoyang District, Beijing, delivered speeches at the meeting. In addition, nearly one hundred representatives from the China Hospital Management Association, the China Pharmaceutical Industry Association, relevant medical institutions, various media and some pharmaceutical companies attended the workshop.

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