The Adventures of Medical Spouse

A Blogumentary on the life, issues, headaches and butt-aches of the Spouse, Partner, Wife and Computing Saviour of the Doctor in training as well as those of his close and distant relatives. I am compiling current views, (it's residency ya'll) stories from the last 8 years(admissions, placement, school, the match, residency and the search for real work) and advice for others in the same strange and (uh) wonderful situation.

Monday, April 11, 2005

Why we love (or hate) Pharmaceutical reps

I want to be a Pharmaceutical Rep when I grow up. Really.

Here in Wisconsin it is a thankless job since they are so regulated. However, they do make a good living and must, as part of their job, live the good life. If they want to make a presentation about a new product, they do it in the best restaurant, that way, the luxury deprived residents will be sure to show up. Or they might sponsor a lake cruise, or a spa trip, whatever. But they know the best of the best. I can do that and I'm a good sales person. Bring it on.

Residents and Med Students have a love/hate relationship with the Pharmaceutical reps who lurk ceaselessly in the corridors and offices trying to hand out samples and put in a good word for some skin product.

The reps are usually very friendly people who love to chat. They can then insert into the conversation little facts about what they are representing and give out a few samples.

Rep: So how are you guys? (buy beauty face) How is the family? (buy beauty face) Did you enjoy the cruise? (buy beauty face) How about a sushi dinner next week? (buy beauty face) By the way, here are a few more samples (buy beauty face) for you. Enjoy!

And I, being the only one in the house who uses beauty products, get a very nice kit with all the newest (buy beauty face) products. This is to make up for all the dinners and cruises I've missed out on.

It is at conventions that drug reps rule supreme. Here is a description of a dinner that my husband had at one of the most exclusive restaurants in

1. An 8 course meal
(buy skin clear)
2. Moet (several bottles)
(buy skin clear)
3. VSOP brandy at command (buy skin clear)
4. $40 dollar cigars after dessert with aperitif and coffee (buy skin clear)

And get this, he didn't want to tell me about it because he thought I might take it hard. I didn't take it hard. No, I took it hard when he wanted to get Sushi for the second time this month the night before leaving on a trip when we weren't even packed. THAT I took hard.

However, these folks, who as I said, are really mostly very genuinely nice, also form a network on which residents can pass messages and get information. They are the guys who know a guy and everybody has got to know a guy who knows a guy. It is through this network that residents might find an opening for a position in just the right spot. And luckily in dermatology, the products being insinuated on you are really very good, and not dangerous or untested, so there is very little cause for moral concern. Which is something I can't say for all Pharmaceutical products.

So for all the Derm Pharm reps out there providing my husband with dinners and me with samples, thanks and stay on the good side of the Force.


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