July 29, 2013 Morayea Pindziak

E-prescribing – Insights into Adoption and Opportunities and Challenges for Pharma Marketers

Alliance recently completed a study on e-prescribing, and has gathered some interesting insights on adoption by physicians and the opportunities and challenges that exist for pharma marketers.

E-prescribing has grown exponentially over the past several years and has now achieved main stream status in the industry. Pharma companies are able to draw due attention to their brands at the point of prescription by communicating relevant messages about the brand, copay cards associated with it, patient education materials and other such information. While on the other side, PBMs are sending messages regarding cost of the brand, formulary status, availability of cheaper alternatives and other such information.

E-prescribing adoption among doctors has grown year-over-year for the past 5 years, with a 25% increase from 2011 to 2012. With this consistent uptake by doctors, pharmaceutical companies need to understand all the influences surrounding e-prescribing in detail so that they can take appropriate measures to receive adequate consideration from the e-prescriber.

The study found that physicians have become comfortable with e-prescribing. More specifically, they often use copay cards obtained through them, they are open to sample vouchers delivered via the platforms, and wouldn’t mind allowing advertising to help offset the cost of the systems.

When it comes to prescribing habits, the study found that a majority of physicians, about 80%, have their decision made on which drug to prescribe before entering a system. However, about 16% of the time that decision changes after obtaining information from their e-prescribing system, a significant percentage that can affect a brand’s sales.