Innovation in Medical Affairs to look out for in Singapore for job seekers

Innovation in Medical Affairs includes both digital technologies and the biological sciences. As the quantity of data generated continues to skyrocket, due to a greater use of wearable devices and the Internet of Things (IoT), this has transformed business models as organisations seek to explain and contextualise the ever more complex medical science to a diverse range of stakeholders across Medical Affairs such as physicians, patients, and payers.


Why are Medical Affairs jobs so important?

With medical credentials, scientific knowledge, and credibility among stakeholders, Medical Affairs professionals are emerging as the embodiment of both scientific knowledge and data within the organisation and across the lifecycle.

Professionals in Medical Affairs jobs act as a primary strategic pillar of the organisation alongside Research and Development, Commercial, and Market Access. Additional responsibilities of Medical Affairs teams may include conducting non-registrational clinical trials after a drug receives FDA approval, executing health economics and outcomes studies, and supporting the brand team in formulating product messages.


Innovation in Medical Affairs within the pharma sector

Innovation in Medical Affairs within pharma across the globe has been centered on the growth of digitalisation, which has impacted the scale and depth of data being generated. From greater data generation and collection, to the use of technologically advanced tools to make sense of data, Medical Affairs experts can identify greater trends with their stakeholders, and project demand in advance.

Below are a few trends that can also have an impact on Medical Affects jobs in Singapore


1. Greater data generation

The first big trend would be the collection of more data. The new healthcare landscape is starting to shape the types of data required from a regulatory perspective. Regulators will need to be open to trial designs and shift towards a value-based pricing for products. This will rely heavily on real-world data to evaluate the comparative effectiveness of treatment options, which presents an opportunity for Medical Affairs to better support payers.

Similarly, there is potential to support healthcare systems in developing their own pathways and guidelines based on their own data, to enhance decision support for clinicians and precision medicine through big data, and to derive population-level insights.

Finally, there are increasing number of patients who are doing their own research and looking to track their own data to monitor outcomes. Their desire to share their own experience and seek for guidance from others presents further opportunities for Medical Affairs to engage better with their stakeholders.


2. Artificial Intelligence (AI) and convergence with Medical Affairs

With greater data generation, the next trend to expect would be the convergence of AI usage with these data being repurposed. Medical Affairs experts can expect to see patient-reported outcomes across all trials, with some outcomes being monitored in real time. Data pools will grow significantly due to strong partnerships that connect disparate data sources. This provides wider access and data across all geographies which can be harnessed by innovative analytics teams housed in Medical Affairs.

As such, it would be beneficial if Medical Affairs experts have a deep understanding of stakeholder needs, whilst possessing strong expertise in all forms of evidence generation, and competitive AI infrastructure that scans externally generated data via automated intelligence, which can translate into medical strategies.


3. Greater use of Big Data to make sense of evolving patients and physicians needs

Lastly, with the convergence of AI, this would amount to a collection of Big Data that Medical Affairs teams can utilise to lead a revolution in improving outcomes for patients via innovative approaches to the use of real-world data. You can expect digital tools to replace many face-to-face interactions which meant that strong medical and scientific content will become ever more critical. Collaboration with independent medical education platforms will also become the new norm of medical education. Meanwhile, robust insight-generation processes will start to feed into all internal decisions. Soon, impact measures will be taken to the individual physician to understand how communication is impacting care. For instance, a few companies are starting to explore the impact of medical activities using data from claims and EMR to quantify how a single Medical Affairs interaction can drive an improved patient outcome.

Medical Affairs teams should also refine their approach toward patients. Digital tools and apps that support patients will play a more active role in understanding their disease and adhering to treatment. Digital therapeutics—a connected device in addition to drugs with a digital component and data output—will enable efficacy beyond the drug and automate treatment with minimal physician-patient interaction in aspects such as dosing, frequency, monitoring, and the prevention and treatment of side effects.

As the coverage for Medical Affairs jobs continue to evolve, we sat down with Karishma Dhupar, Senior Consultant, who specialises within innovation in Medical Affairs recruitment in the region. Find out what are her thoughts on the sector below:


What are the changes and innovation in Medical Affairs that you are noticing within recruitment?

There is a blurring differentiation and preference for hiring at entry level positions between Medical Directors (MDs) and non-MDs. Currently, you can expect leaner structures with dual roles both field-based in addition to affiliate strategy, in Singapore and even in larger geographical countries.


Top Medical Affairs jobs Singapore

Karishma shared that “Therapeutic affiliate strategy-based roles will grow. These include ranks from Medical Manager and Medical Leads. And this trend can be seen especially within oncology and haematology spaces.”


Looking to apply to Medical Affairs jobs Singapore?

Karishma shared her top advice if you are keen to apply to medical affairs jobs in Singapore. The Medical Affairs function has evolved to a strategic pillar that drives business whilst continuing its scientific and ethical guardian that cares for patients. This is creating an extremely high talent supply compared to demand. So how can Medical Affairs professionals make themselves more competitive?


Equip yourself with versatile skill sets

“Versatile skill-sets mostly but not limited to excellent communication skills, ability to influence and persuade without line reporting.”


Strong business acumen and strategic thinking

 “Business acumen and strategic mindset are equally if not more important than domain expertise with a deeper understanding of processes and compliance. This is not the profile for a mere subject matter expert, as the success metrics often come from cross functional and external stakeholder perceptions. This is important to sustain the mid-level roles and climb the corporate ladder.”


Looking to fill your Medical Affairs jobs with the right talent?

Karishma shared that having a smaller number of highly effective people is more important than having larger teams with average skillsets. People with regional or global experience provide more holistic pictures to solving problems. She also added that physicians with clinical experience (excluding medical graduates who never worked in hospitals) are likely to offer a better outlook at disease strategy from their first-hand experience.

Ultimately, Real Life Sciences is here to support you on your journey – whether its upscaling your Medical Affairs team with sought after talent, or for you to explore your next career opportunity. Reach out to us via the form below and we will be in touch! Otherwise, click on the button below to check out our latest suite of jobs bank.


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