Within3 CEO Lance Hill and other industry thought leaders were quoted in MedCityNews about the preference of some medical affairs insight-gathering activities to remain virtual or a hybrid of virtual and in-person after the pandemic. What does the future hold for virtual engagement in medical affairs?
A recent survey published by Reuters for Within3 explores insights from over 300 medical affairs thought leaders on the role of digital work at their workplaces. A majority of those surveyed said 40-49% of medical affairs and life science engagements are expected to be virtual in the next three years, according to the Reuters survey.
Specifically, the report surveyed 304 professionals in life science, 82% of whom held leadership positions in medical affairs, including VP or C-suite level, director, or manager positions. Of note, responses came from executives in the pharmaceutical (75%), biotech (19%), medical device (5%), and consumer health manufacturers (1%).
Asked about the continuing role of virtual collaboration in life science, Hill stated that a virtual engagement platform simply provides a more efficient means of doing critical insight-gathering work. “Using virtual is giving your organization another option, another channel, for doing work. So maybe you want to have an in-person meeting, but you use an asynchronous environment to agree on your agenda ahead of time or make sure people do the pre-work – so your face-to-face time is really productive and fruitful,” said Hill. “Or you attend a medical conference in-person, but keep a virtual room open to collect near real-time reactions to posters or meetings with KOLs. Instead of thinking about what is lost, just acknowledge it’s a different approach, and one from which you only stand to gain.”