Read this message board over at Cafe Pharma for an interesting though rather alarming thread about Wyeth's newly approved antidepressant, Pristiq. Cafe Pharma is a site frequented by drug reps, although because postings are anonymous, one never knows whether a given comment is actually from a rep or from an outsider with an agenda. Nonetheless, this particular thread sounds real, because it involves Wyeth reps grousing about upcoming layoffs (layoffs which the company has, in fact, announced) and about the new Pristiq sales force tag line: "People, Passion, Performance...Pristiq!"
Here is one rep's snide take on his company's upcoming campaign:
"PEOPLE - 1/2 of you will be gone in less than 27 days
PASSION - There is no passion now, but for those that remain with Wyeth, we will bribe the passion out of you by taking you to Vegas for 4 days.
PERFORMANCE - You thought it was hard to reach your performance incentive before? Wait until 2nd quarter
PRISTIQ - Good luck selling both Effexor XR and Pristiq at the same time. So Dr., would you like to hear about my antidepressant that has been around for 12 years, with proven efficacy with the ability to titrate the dose as need to better care for each patient's needs that will have generic competition in 4 months, or would you like to hear about my brand new antidepressant with one dose, less indications and less evidence of efficacy? You want me to choose, let me check with my bonus plan to see which one pays more."
If this is the typical attitude within the Pristiq sales force, Wyeth may end up a little shy of the blockbuster they were hoping for!