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The Effects of Detailing on Prescribing Decisions under Quality Uncertainty

Ching, Andrew and Ishihara, Masakazu (2007): The Effects of Detailing on Prescribing Decisions under Quality Uncertainty.

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We develop a structural model of detailing and prescribing decisions under an environment where detailing helps physicians obtain the current information sets about drug qualities. Our model assumes that a representative opinion leader is responsible for updating the prior belief about the quality of drugs via patients' experiences, and manufacturers use detailing as a means to build/maintain the measure of physicians who are informed of the current information sets. We estimate our model using data on sales, prices, and detailing minutes at the product level for ACE-inhibitor with diuretic in Canada. We quantify the marginal impact of detailing on current demand at different points in time, and demonstrate how it depends on the measure of well-informed physicians and the information sets. Furthermore, we conduct a policy experiment to examine how a public awareness campaign, which encourages physicians/patients to report their drug experiences, would affect managerial incentives to detail.

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