Planning To Communicate
Objectives: As a discipline, Pharmacometics has matured to the point where no educated observer doubts that a skilled pharmacometrician can contribute valuable information to any drug development program. And yet, the general sense within the pharmacometric community is that the pharmaceutical industry is not taking full advantage of the value this discipline offers. The premise of this theoretical talk is that at least some of this inefficiency occurs because people from other disciplines simply do not understand what pharmacometricians are talking about. In addition to discussing the source of this communication problem, this talk argues that pharmacometricians who want to be effective must focus on this issue, and provides a conceptual framework to help them do so.
Methods: The message of this talk is that communicating effectively requires planning. Specifically, this planning requires appreciation of three crucial issues. First, one must accept that communication is more about the other than about oneself. Second, one must recognize and embrace the emotional aspect of communication even in professional settings. Third, one must realize that one gets better at communication just as one improves in any skill: by studying established techniques, adopting appropriate tools and practicing.
Conclusions: Pharmacometricians use complicated mathematics to produce probabilistic information. Many other important participants in the drug development process simply do not understand how to evaluate and utilize this information. Therefore, in order for Pharmacometrics to deliver its full value to the process of drug development, its practitioners must focus not only on producing information but also on how to communicate that information effectively.
 Lesko, “Paving the Critical Path: How can Clinical Pharmacology Help Achieve the Vision,” CP&T, 81:2, 2/2007.
 Mandema, et.al., “Model-based Development of gemcabene, a new lipid-altering agent,” The AAPS Journal, 7, E513-522.