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New Rx For Big Pharma

Big pharma has to change the way it sells drugs.

That's the conclusion of a new PricewaterhouseCoopers report about what the industry will look like in 2020, which calls the big pharma sales model "increasingly ineffective."

Nearly all of the major drug companies are shrinking their salesforces by the thousands as the industry braces for a wave of generic drugs and responds to pushback from doctors.

The PWC White Paper says 11 years from now that "the role of the traditional (drug) sales representative will be largely obsolete."

The report claims that between 1996 and 2005 that the pharma army nearly doubled in size to 100,000 sales reps.

But PWC says the companies are getting less bang for the buck. Between 2004 and 2005 the dollar growth per doctor sales detail fell 23 percent.

The report recommends big pharma adopt a multi-pronged, multi-platform drug and wellness marketing approach versus the current one-size-fits-all sales model.

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