BusinessWeek says the writing is on the wall:
Bye-bye Big Pharma sales rep. A host of forces is now converging to clamp down on hard-driving, gift-toting pharmaceutical pitchmasters who have been ambushing physicians for the last decade. Doctors, consumer groups, and government regulators have all had enough. And now, pharma CEOs are questioning whether the hard sell even pays off. On Jan. 22, Pfizer Inc. announced unprecedented layoffs. As part of an effort to cut $2 billion in costs by the end of 2008, and to adjust to the loss of patents on several blockbusters, it plans to eliminate 7,800 jobs across the board, including 20% of the European sales force. That’s on top of the 2,200 U.S. salespeople who were let go in November.