Monday, November 30, 2009


I am not accustomed to dealing with drug reps. During residency, they were banned from our program by our department chair. Generally speaking, I think that emergency physicians are a much less optimum target for sales than internists or family practitioners. Probably at least 75% of my prescriptions are based on about five different medications. In addition to the fact that I stick with tried-and-true medications, emergency physicians tend to write prescriptions that don't have refills. It is a lot less appealing to get an EM doc to write for a 30-day supply, rather than an internist that's going to write for 365-days worth, and has the potential to renew that prescription year after year.

Anyhow, at the new job, there are drug reps that occasionally drop in. I never know when they are going to be around, and they typically just show up in the break room with food. Apparently, the last time one came while I was working, they were offended that I didn't take time to visit them. I don't really have any interest in looking at brochures or reading about receptors. If your product is not in any of my books, I am not going to write for it. Period.

The last one that I did sit down with, I felt guilty the whole time. There were patients waiting to be seen, but I needed to shove some food in my face anyway, so I figured it might as well be a fresh salad and wrap instead of the standard PB&J I bring to work.

Care to guess what his product was?

It was a reversal agent for narcotic-induced constipation. Yup, for 10 minutes while I crammed food in my mouth and nodded, he went on and on about success rates of inducing bowel movements within an hour's time. I might be a physician, but I don't really want to talk about intestinal transit times WHILE I AM EATING!

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