Distilling Influence Networks
Great physician targets are not synonymous
with high-volume prescribers. There are many physicians who do not
write many scripts but who exert significant influence on other
physicians that do. Often, they are prominent figures but they may also
be low key, and there are many of them. There is another breed of
physician equally worthy of sales and marketing attention: physicians
who make referral decisions for the patient. Depending on which way the
referral goes, this can translate into significant additional or missed
This paper takes an off-the-beaten-track approach to this formidable
problem by deploying patient-level data. The idea is very simple: Just
like a phone call between two people may flag a relationship between the
two, a patient that moves from one physician to another may be a
giveaway that there is some relationship between the two. Patient level
data capture exactly that. In addition, this approach identifies and
profiles influencers and referral networks, the various levels of
influence involved, unofficial networks at work, and insightful group
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