Vol. 10, Issue No. 10: 8 JUNE 2011 – EXECUTIVE SUMMARY CONTENTS
(Click on titles to see a summary and find link to full text of each item)

Article Summaries

The Pharmaguy Social Media Timeline™
A Record of Social Media Events Impacting the Pharmaceutical Industry

Pharmaguy SM TimelineThe pharmaceutical industry is at a turning point in its adoption of new social media tools and applications for communication with healthcare professionals, consumers, patients, policymakers, and payers. Practically every pharmaceutical company has launched a social media project or application of one sort or another (see the “Pharma and Healthcare Social Media Wiki” for an up-to-date list). To be sure, not all these efforts take full advantage of social media tools, most notably the ability to have two-way conversations. For that to happen, says the industry, FDA guidance is needed.

Yet, the long-awaited social media guidance from the FDA — whenever it arrives — may turn out to be nothing more than a stamp of approval on activities in which the industry is currently engaged. Practically every issue that FDA guidance is expected to address has already been handled independently by a few pioneering pharmaceutical companies. Rather than waiting for FDA’s anti climatic guidelines, Pharmaguy decided to publish The Pharmaguy Social Media Timeline™ now, at a time when the industry already has set precedents in every social media application.

Entries in The Pharmaguy Social Media Timeline were chosen by Pharmaguy (@pharmaguy on Twitter, aka John Mack, Publisher of Pharma Marketing News and author of this article) to represent what he considers to be important or memorable events that had an impact on the use of social media by the global pharmaceutical industry. The focus is mainly on uses of social media for commercial purposes, ie, sales and marketing and on “first” or precedent-setting events.

Entries include a date, an event category, an event title, a brief description of the event, comments from Pharmaguy and other experts, and links to more information on Pharma Marketing Blog and elsewhere. Of course, no timeline would be complete without images and Pharmaguy included several of the best in his Timeline.

Topic headings include:

  • Social Media Defined
  • A Little History of Social Media
  • What’s Included in the Timeline
  • The Pharmaguy Social Media Timeline

Also included…

  • Where to find latest version of the Timeline
  • Where to submit corrections, additions or comments to the Timeline

Read this article now. It’s FREE…

Download PDF file

Finding the Consumer Within the Patient
Insights Into How Healthcare Decisions are Made

A conversation with Grace Soyao, Founder & Chief Strategy Officer of Self Care Catalysts Inc., a health research and strategy company, about her company’s unique and proprietary processes and tools specifically designed using health psychology to understand how today’s patients/healthcare consumers make healthcare decisions.

Some Questions/Topics Discussed

  • Patient Segmentation: The Unique Profiles of Prediabetes, Type 1, and Type 2 Patient Classes
  • Understanding the Buying Process
  • Strategic Initiatives to Enhance Patient Self-Monitoring Practices
  • Development of Effective Medication Self Adherence Programs
  • Improving Patient-Physician Conversations
  • Creation of Relevant Integrated Diabetes Self Care Systems
  • Empowering Diabetes Circle of Care Givers and Supporters
  • Ideation Platform for New Product Solutions: Technology, Support Services, Self Monitoring, and Adherence Systems

Listen to the podcast archive here:

New Facebook Policy “Kind of Hurts” Pharma Marketers
Facebook On/OffAn official Facebook statement says: “In an effort to encourage conversations between brands and people, we recently made some changes to our policies that affect some official pharmaceutical pages directed at building communities. This change does not affect pages for prescription drugs. We think these changes will help encourage an authentic dialogue on pages.”

As reported in Advertising Age: “This kind of hurts us,” said a digital-strategy chief at one of the top 10 pharma companies regarding the new policy, which takes effect Aug. 15. “In large part, having a Facebook page gets us in the social media door and not having comments keeps us in good graces with FDA.”

Read more, including a link to the podcast: Pharma Facebook Commenting Changes — The “Final” Story, here: Click Here FDA, DOJ, & Google: Conspiracy Theory, Part 2
Conspiracy TheoryIn the last issue of Pharma Marketing News, it was suggested that the FDA’s infamous 14 warning letters sent to major pharma companies regarding violative search engine ads may have been a “shot across Googles bow,” intended to force Google to halt its acceptance of ads from “illegal” online pharmacies (see “How FDA, in Cahoots with DOJ, Brought Google Down”;Click Here).

Many people did not take this “conspiracy theory” seriously. Some pooh-poohed the suggestion that the FDA was involved. One commenter said “OMG… what a stretch…I’m sure they are laughing at you at FDA.”

It turns out that the FDA WAS INVOLVED in the criminal investigation of Google by the Department of Justice (DOJ).

For more details, click here: Click Here FDA Drops “Social Media” from Its 2011 Guidance Agenda
Missing Social MediaMissing from the “Guidance Agenda: New & Revised Draft Guidances CDER is Planning to Publish During Calendar Year 2011” is “Promotion of Prescription Drug Products Using Social Media Tools”, which WAS on the 2010 Agenda.

What’s up with that?

Read more about that here: Click Here First FDA Social Media Guidance to Address Responding to “Unsolicited Requests” for Off-label Information
Not ApprovedFDA’s 2011 guidance agenda did NOT include “Promotion of Prescription Drug Products Using Social Media Tools”, which WAS on the 2010 Agenda. What IS included in the 2011 agenda, however, is “Responding to Unsolicited Requests for Prescription Drug and Medical Device Information, Including Those Encountered on the Internet.”

Why did the FDA put “Responding to Unsolicited Requests” at the TOP of its list of “issues related to Internet/social media promotion of FDA-regulated medical products” for which it promises to issue guidance in 2011? Where did that issue arise? It wasn’t mentioned in the Federal Register, and there was only one mention of “unsolicited” in presentations made at the November, 2009 public hearing. That presentation put forward a social media off-label user-generated content scenario for which the FDA might issue guidance in 2011.

Find more details here: Click Here