Understanding the complexities of implementing a generic pharmaceutical company commercialization plan.

Seasoned pharma executives know that implementing a generic pharmaceutical company commercialization plan in the US market is a complex exercise in multi-tasking. For those new to the US pharma space, here’s a high-level overview to help you prepare for what lies ahead.

Let’s begin with the field sales team and sales operations support teams. During implementation, these two teams will work together, along with the financial team, on multiple fronts to support growth and profitability objectives.

The field sales team will be building relationships with the many entities that participate in the U.S. pharmaceutical distribution channel. The team requires analytics and support from the sales operations team for modeling, pricing and responding to RFPs. All pricing decisions require careful evaluation of how they may impact government reporting values, state pricing disclosure regulations, existing commercial contracts, cash flow and profitability.

In addition to working with your field sales team, sales operations support also works with the finance team to build pricing guidelines, reporting, gross to net calculations and a host of other critical deliverables. One of the primary functions of the sales operations support team is to use all available market data points along with corporate margin objectives to establish pricing. All of these mission critical activities should be documented and governed by a comprehensive Standard Operating Procedure (SOP) and ensure all team members have the discipline to follow them.

Wholesalers and large retail chains will purchase products and then fulfill orders which ultimately end up at local pharmacies where physician ordered prescriptions are dispensed to commercial health plan members, government program beneficiaries and cash buyers.

Most generic pharmaceutical companies have a host of contracts with wholesaler source programs, retail chain stores, Pharmaceutical Benefit Managers (PBMs), Managed Care Organizations (MCOs) and even Group Purchasing Organizations (GPOs). Because government benefits programs represent roughly 50 Percent of all US utilization, strong consideration for securing Medicaid and PHS agreements is an important component of an integrated commercialization plan.

While all of this in ongoing, you need to maintain existing business continuity. For that, it’s important to have an experienced team in place that incorporates expert internal resources, an outsourced partner or a combination of both to support the selling and finance teams.

Contract financial terms can get complicated quickly. The only way to really know the influence of the pricing on other commercial and governmental contracts is to ensure pricing terms are carefully evaluated and modeled.

The generic space is cutthroat. Every penny of margin matters. Full vetting of the pricing process and disciplined adherence to the SOPs is critical to an effective commercialization plan and, ultimately, company survival.

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