Oncology DTC: Oncologists perspective

gabayanKEY TAKEAWAY: Oncologists are pretty much neutral when it comes to DTC marketing of cancer drugs.  Some say that patients are asking about certain drugs, but trust their doctor to provide the right treatments to fight their disease.

Interesting day in market research with Oncologists to talk about DTC marketing of Oncology drugs.  Here are some key topline findings:

1ne: Majority say that patients are NOT asking for/about specific advertised drugs.

2wo: Claims by pharma companies, in ads and in details, are fact checked online with other Oncologists and driven by data rather than brand claims.


3hree: Pharma is doing very little to help them help their patients.  They want more educational materials, including “take home” information for patients receiving therapy.

4our: There is a LOT of off-label use driven by contact with colleagues.

5ive: They are “not worried” about cancer drugs that seem to “over promise”.  As one doctor said “I want my patients to be optimistic rather than pessimistic when it comes to treatments”.

6ix: Biggest concern is “cost of cancer drugs” and that insurer may “tie their hands” when it comes to treatments, especially off-label.

Overall, they believe that pharma DTC is helpful in driving patients online to get more information, but they say that pharma product websites often have information that confuses patients.


There are a lot of opportunities here for pharma to really become patient focused but will they learn?

Qualitative research, Houston, n=18