The pharmaceutical industry is fast paced. With a constant string of mergers, acquisitions, and diverse product offerings, staying up to date can consume valuable time, resources, and cause undue frustration. As a strategic sourcing professional, I quickly realized that best way to maximize my time while keeping current on pharma trends was to review only dependable and focused news sources. But where to start?

In a traditional sense, mentors, trade organizations, trade shows/conferences, face-to-face networking meetings, and printed magazines have provided the majority of our information. But, let's face it, blogs, Twitter, LinkedIn, Google alerts, forums, and online trade publications are simply more convenient. However, as fun as it is to follow a thought leader on Twitter, the 140-character limit simply doesn't cut it when it comes to a viable news source.

The main decision on which source to reference seems to be centered on your specific area of interest. In the pharmaceutical industry you can divide publications into several categories:

Business Reports

Getting the latest business news can be quite simple since pharmaceutical business trends are reported in general business publications such as Forbes, The New York Times, and The Wall Street Journal. Online access is available for all three, but be prepared for a subscription fee.

Industry Magazines

For more in depth and specific Pharmaceutical industry reports Informa Business Information (IBI), The Pharmaceutical Business Review (PBR), and Thomson Reuters (specifically Bio World and Medical Device Daily) are great resources. Keep in mind that these publishers offer more than a few specialized publications and span a range of topics including production and manufacturing, drug research, contract research and services, investment, regulatory affairs, and medical devices.

Regulatory Affairs

SCRIP from IBI stands out as presenting valuable strategic analysis and regulatory affair insights. IBI's Pharma and MedTech Business Intelligence site along with the "sheet" series of reports provides up to the minute market specific insights. PBR provides open news, and industry information for a wide range of Pharmaceutical sectors along with market analysis reports at a premium.

Thomson Reuters spans the widest range of topics taking readers from general business considerations to strategy, regular affairs, and a daily news source. In particular, Bio World and Medical Device Daily provide both insightful and relevant articles on a daily basis.

Industry daily news and magazines are further offered by UMB Canon, Rodman Media, Dice Holdings, and VertMarkets. The American Association of Pharmaceutical Scientists (AAPS) also clearly stands out due to the quality of its news updates, magazines, and journals.

Company Websites

UMB Canon specializes in medical devises and diagnostics, offering MDDI for daily news and Qmed as their suppliers’ directory. Rodman Media is also supplier centric, with an emphasis on contract manufacturing. Their publications Contract Pharma and Medical Product Outsourcing offer daily news briefs and company overviews. Dice Holdings also offers industry specific company profiles segmented into the three publications Bio Space, Clinical Space, and Device Space.

Ultimately, industry-specific publications present perhaps the most relevant and easily attainable sources of information for strategic sourcing professionals looking to keep abreast of the latest changes in the pharmaceutical industry. The publisher covers a width breath of topics, which can be an advantage since it allows monitoring not only the state of pharmaceutical manufacturing, but also the raw materials needed during the process. To narrow down your selection, define a specific topic of interest and then choose two to three publications to follow on a regular basis in order to remain knowledgeable and current.

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Martin Przeworski

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