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Healthcare Marketing

Fall 2009 MBA Course

B9601-052: Healthcare Marketing

MW - B Term, 12:30PM to 02:00PM
Location: URI 329

Instructor: John Benya; Robert Essner


This half-term course provides a practical understanding of marketing strategies for pharmaceutical, biotechnology, and medical device products.  It focuses on the environment and market dynamics that can have a significant impact on the success of these marketing strategies.  An understanding of the product development process, from concept to commercialization, is an integral component of this course. The course also addresses the needs and wants, as well as critical issues, facing the key stakeholders and decision makers within the marketing channel of this complex industry (medical professionals, consumers, hospitals, payors, sales force, etc.). Specifically, some of the issues addressed in this course include:

•    role of marketing in new product development
•    what “branding” means in the marketing of medical products
•    direct-to-consumer marketing tactics
•    professional and gatekeeper management
•    pricing and third-party reimbursement on a global basis
•    impact of regulation and market structure on global sales and marketing strategies
•    importance of intellectual property (patents, trademarks, etc.)
•    sales force design, training, incentives, and management
•    marketing “tools” (personal selling, medical education, direct-to-consumer, the internet, etc.)
•    role/importance of marketing research
•    product life cycle management

Students not fully knowledgeable of marketing principles will be requested to do background reading (e.g., Kotler’s Marketing Management) to become more familiar with standard marketing concepts and vocabulary that will be used in the course. For those with limited healthcare experience, certain readings and a glossary of terms will be provided. The course will use case studies and industry practitioners as guest speakers to provide additional insight and perspective. Note: This course is complementary to Profs. Cramer and Essner’s Strategy and Competition in Pharmaceuticals and Biotechnology offered in the spring semester. 

Evaluation is 30% class participation, 30% short writing assignment (case study), 40% final paper (case study or other topic).