Medical Affairs Excellence: Leadership & Value


One of the first steps in ensuring that your organization has a strong Medical Affairs function is to ensure that you have the appropriate leadership. From our Medical Affairs Consortium research & 2nd roundtable we found that the growing importance of Medical Science Liaisons (MSLs) within the Medical Affairs Function is demonstrated by the level of its leadership. Recent research shows that 82% of Medical Affairs functions are reporting to a Vice President level or above, up significantly from 57% in 2009. As the Medical Affairs function continues to grow in importance, understanding the key industry trends in leadership and value can help to propel an organization to success.

From our recent 2nd Roundtable for the Best Practices, LLC’s Medical Affairs Consortium, we found the following key points regarding leadership & value in the Medical Affairs function:

  • Scientific Interactions Provide the Highest Value: All internal stakeholders find “Scientific Interactions” as either a very valuable or highly valuable Medical Science responsibility. Also, all respondents think “Scientific Interactions” is highly or very valuable for internal stakeholders.
  • More than half of the Medical Science Liaisons’ Responsibilities Have Value Gaps: A more significant gap exists in the emerging markets regarding the activities that internal stakeholders value most and that external stakeholders are perceived to value most.
  • Value Associated with Medical Science Liaisons’ Responsibilities: Internal stakeholders find value in responsibilities related to medical communication with key influencers and internal support for sales & marketing activities. While perceived value for medical communication with external stakeholders is seen as high, there is less perceived value for the internal support for sales & marketing among internal stakeholders.

The function’s growing stature – and increased investments into such key areas as health outcomes research and Medical Science Liaison activities – are proving to be game-changers for savvy companies in a data-driven healthcare market. Understanding how to effectively lead this key function can help leaders to achieve success in today’s competitive marketplace.


To review this week’s research from the 2nd Medical Affairs Consortium Roundtable on leadership & value, click here!

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