Sunday, December 27, 2009

The ultimate sales job (in the operating room)

Here’s a good story from David S. Hilzenrath in the Washington Post Sunday Dec. 27, about medical sales reps. Apparently they have to scrub down just like doctors and nurses (sanitize their own bodies just like in Michael Crichton’s “Andromeda Strain”, maybe) in order to go into the O.R. and, well, sell. Supposedly they tell doctors what instruments are likely to be needed where and even how to sanitize them. Do they have the best interests of the patient at heart? The link is (web URL) here. The Post article discusses the issue with respect to a spinal repair procedure called a kyphoplasy.

I remember when I was a site rep for Univac back in 1973, management thought I didn’t have a “marketing profile.” What does a “marketing profile” mean for a medical sales rep? Selling is, well, selling. It supposedly takes extroversion, not attention to detail.

Hospitals are getting I.T. savvy, giving caregivers CD's of their loved one's Xrays and Catscans, only to find that some doctor's offices don't have the right PC software to read them. And it's a little bid rude for a doctors' appointment to start with showing the patient the cat scan of his brain on an office laptop. But younger doctors do that.

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