Physician Mailing Lists Demystified

There are so many options with our Doctors files that it can feel overwhelming if you’re not exactly sure what all the terms mean, or why you’d want one select over another, or why you have to make so many choices in the first place.  So I’ve put together this handy reference to guide you through the available selects the next time you want to send a mailing to doctors and need to make some decisions on how to target them effectively:

There’s No Place Like Home … or the Office …
Deciding on the address type is the first step when selecting doctors.  Since we have many of the same doctors at office address and home address, there is duplication between the two databases, which is why we always select an address type.

Our Doctors at Office database is the most comprehensive option, with over 1.7 million records that are coded with specialties, office size, and all the other office-related selects.

However, depending on what you’re promoting, it may make more sense to reach them away from the office.  Our Doctors at Home database has fewer records, but this is the best choice if you want to select by age, gender, or any of those demographic/lifestyle type selects.

Want to send your mail piece to the doctors’ homes, but still want to target them by certain specialties and/or office-related selects – that’s what our Doctors at Home by Specialty database is for.  This is the perfect marriage of the above databases.

Last note on addresses – if it doesn’t matter which address type your mail piece goes to, we can dedupe the lists to maximize the number of doctors you reach.  For example, we can select doctors at home and the balance of records at their office address.

You Want Specialties?  We Got Specialties.
We have over 150 doctor specialties.  Many of them often make sense to select together – for example, we have 6 oncology specialties, 6 orthopedic specialties, 31 surgery-related specialties, and 15 pediatric specialties.  Be sure to let us know if you want all related specialties or if you only want a specific sub-specialty.

The most common specialty grouping is “Primary Care Physicians.”  It’s actually no longer in vogue for physicians to be coded as Primary Care or even General Practitioners – instead, they are typically coded as Family Practitioners or Internal Medicine, so by default we select all four of those specialties when PCPs are requested.  And sometimes people have Pediatricians, Ob-Gyns, and Geriatricians in mind as well when referring to PCPs.  So to ease any confusion, when you request PCPs, let us know if you are thinking of the four main PCP types, or all specialties that could be considered primary care.

It’s also good to know that most doctors have a primary and secondary specialty.  By default, we select doctors that have the requested specialty as either their primary or secondary.  Please let us know if you only want doctors whose primary specialty is the one you are requesting.

Just What Kind of Doctor Are You?
Unless specified otherwise, we select MDs (Doctors of Medicine) and DOs (Doctors of Osteopathic Medicine) for physician requests.  They are very similar, but DOs tend to have a more “whole person” approach to medicine.  If you want to limit your mailing to a certain degree type, be sure to let us know.

Students and Residents and Fellows, Oh My!
There are many steps to becoming a practicing physician.  We can select Medical Students who are at the first phase of the journey.  After graduating medical school, many doctors decide to to get 2 – 7 years of additional training in their specialty through a residency program, at which point they are referred to as Resident Physicians.  And then there are the really hardcore doctors who go on to even more training if they’ve chosen a certain sub-specialty that requires it – they are called Fellows while in the fellowship program.

Size Doesn’t Matter … Except When It Does.
If you’re looking to target a certain office size, there are two ways we can determine the size you’re looking for:

  • The Office Size is the number of medical professionals (Doctors, Physician Assistants, and Nurse Practitioners) in the office.
  • The Employee Size is the number of all employees (including Nurses, administrative staff, etc) in the office.

For example, if you’re looking for group practices, we’ll use Office Size to get practices with more than 2 practitioners.  But if what you really want is practices with large support staffs, we’ll use a large Employee Size.

So What Am I … Chopped Liver?
While Office Managers are not included in the Office Size total, they are of course an important part of any physician’s practice and sometimes they’re the best target for your mailing.  We can provide the Office Managers’ names along with the Doctors on a mailing list, or just the Office Managers alone.

Where Did Everybody Go?
Let’s say you want to select offices with more than 4 doctors, but you don’t want so many that hospitals are included.  Or perhaps you only want doctors that work in clinics.  We are able to select (or omit) doctors who work in hospitals, clinics, universities/teaching hospitals, or for the government.

Looking to mail to doctors in specific hospitals, clinics, etc?  We can target specific institution names.

We can also select doctors who are affiliated with hospitals – meaning, they have their own practice, but also have privileges to examine and treat patients at a hospital.

Well Now, Isn’t That Special?
Now that we’ve covered the basics, time to give our premium selects their 15 seconds of fame.  We can help you target practices by their daily patient volume, the type of EMR (electronic medical record) software used, number of locations, and the types of insurance they accept (including Medicaid/Medicare).  We can also select the year doctors graduated or how many years they’ve been practicing.

Let’s Get Personal.
Want to segment your doctor mailing list by gender, age, household income, ethnicity, marital status, hobbies (golf, anyone?), purchasing habits, investments, or favorite color?  We can do any or all of those … except one.  I’ll let you guess which one.  (Here’s a hint: mine is orange.)

Still Haven’t Found What You’re Looking For?
That’s pretty much all the available selects, but if you’re looking for something I didn’t mention above, let us know – there’s a chance we can find a way to target it.

Amy Badurina

About Amy Badurina

Amy Badurina is the Marketing Maven at Complete Medical Lists. She is passionate about good design, photography, hiking, and her three boys.
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