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The Other Side of the Coin: What are the Co-Primary Responsibilities of a Medical Science Liaison?

Building off our previous post on quantitative vs qualitative metrics, it is important to define the primary responsibilities of the Medical Science Liaison.

While there are many secondary and tertiary MSL responsibilities, this post is meant to discuss the most fundamental ones.

The primary responsibility that usually comes to mind when thinking of the MSL role is clinical and scientific support, conducted through scientific exchange.

This responsibility is an invaluable activity of the MSL which should not be overlooked. In fact, it should be fully optimized.

However, it is easy to focus on this responsibility as the sole primary responsibility of an MSL…and that would be a mistake.

There is an entire other side of the coin that is seldom discussed, even less often trained and optimized, but acts as a very strong multiplier (ie, synergistically) when combined with scientific exchange.

It is such an important responsibility and is unique to the MSL role. If properly conducted, it can shape the development of the product being supported, impact the medical and clinical strategies, and lead to a very important “edge” on the competition. As a result, we treat this as a second, Co-Primary responsibility of an MSL.

The reason why it can be Co-Primary is because it can be conducted during scientific exchange and is easily incorporated in the everyday MSL/HCP meetings already being conducted.

However, it is not very intuitive and rarely discussed throughout the MSL and Medical Affairs Communities. Oftentimes organizations will acknowledge that they desire the highly valuable output of this responsibility, but generally are less able to describe what the best way to obtain it is.

Quality interactions are the basis for generating these valuable MSL outputs.

And that’s what this program is specifically designed to create.



Published date

May 5, 2023