Another example of a company exploring new interaction models:
A new Pfizer Inc. partnership with a doctors' Web site could attract fresh attention to how drug companies interact with physicians.
The New York pharmaceuticals maker will announce a partnership today with Sermo Inc., a social-networking site for licensed physicians. Facing financial pressures as some of its best-selling products lose patent protection, Pfizer is looking for more-efficient ways to reach the doctors who prescribe its medicines. Under the arrangement, Pfizer-affiliated doctors will be able to talk candidly with the site's 31,000 members, potentially giving the company insights into prescribing patterns and a way to show doctors data on its drugs.
Michael Berelowitz, Pfizer's senior vice president for global medical, says the company wants to communicate more openly, despite the risk. "We live in an environment where we're closely monitored all the time and have constraints around what we say and how we say it," he says. "Given that this kind of medium is the way forward...we have to learn how to behave in it."