Work in Iowa Healthcare Jobs

Job Information

Merck US Scientific Director Medical Affairs (SDMA) Oncology in Des Moines, Iowa

Job Description

Our Medical Affairs team advances patient care by engaging in scientific exchange with external medical experts and industry professionals ensuring the scientific value of our products is realized. We engage and train internal employees to ensure that they thoroughly comprehend the science behind the medicine and review further unmet medical needs to bolster collaboration and further differentiate our portfolio.

The US Scientific Director, Medical Affairs (SDMA) is a regionally based position in US Medical Affairs for our Research & Development Division. The role drives scientific excellence and optimizes field readiness across USMA’s five strategic pillars: 1) Scientific Exchange, 2) Company Trials, 3) Investigator-Sponsored Programs, 4) Congresses, 5) Insights. The SDMA is an experienced therapeutic area (TA) leader/subject matter expert (SME) possessing relevant medical affairs and field medical (FM) experience to guide and direct FM strategy and training in alignment with organizational priorities. Along with the USMA Field Leaders (Executive Director (ED)/Associate Vice President (AV)), the SDMA is responsible for regional FM strategy, training, and prioritization of Global Plans for USMA.

As a core member (or co-lead) of the US Regional Medical Affairs Team (RMAT), the SDMA partners with the Global Therapeutic Area (TA) Team and cross-functional members to enable US regional implementation of the Scientific and Medical Affairs Research Team (SMART) Plan in part by: 1) Infusing local insights into Global Scientific Content (GSC) and Global Scientific Training (GST) plans, 2) Facilitating local pull-through of GSC and GST, 3) Orchestrating development and execution of aligned local training, and 4) Evaluating training effectiveness and field application.


  • Infuses local insights into GSC and GST plans, facilitates local pull-through of GSC and GST, and plans and implements aligned local training as needed

  • Identifies and prioritizes US field resources, training needs, and activities across the portfolio

  • Develops and provides input into field resources to supply the Regional Medical Scientific Directors (RMSDs) with timely, relevant, and approved materials for medical and/or scientific training and ensures content and training needs are met

  • Partners with GST, GSC, US Regional Director of Medical Affairs (RDMA) (where applicable), US Global Clinical Trial Organization, Global Medical and Scientific Affairs (GMSA) TA leads, and relevant internal and external SMEs to orchestrate and deliver regional training deemed necessary by RMATs and Field Team

  • Ensures alignment and pull-through of pre- and post-congress regional training and content

  • Collaborates with the US Medical Affairs Executive Director (USMA ED) and the US RDMA where applicable, to define prioritized USMA Field strategy and implementation goals

  • Actively participates in bi-directional information exchange and sharing of best practices across the various roles and teams in USMA, including Health Systems, to optimize USMA Field execution

  • Collaborates with the USMA FM Alignment Director to ensure consistent standards, processes, and harmonization for training activities (e.g., clinical immersions, verbalizations, journal clubs, etc.)

  • Provides input into strategic congress priorities for USMA and participates in activity planning at key scientific congresses

  • Aligns with USMA Leadership Team (LT) and has responsibility for or input into the integrated US Country Medical Affairs Plan (CMAP), including US Field Medical Plan (FMP)/Field Engagement Plan (FEP) and field training plan for assigned TA

  • Continuously scans the healthcare environment and analyzes emerging trends in the therapeutic and competitive landscape to optimize US FM Team capabilities

  • Serving as point of contact for the development and maintenance of US new-hire scientific foundational on-boarding in close collaboration with ED, Team Leads (TLs), and relevant SMEs

  • Working with USMA Leadership and relevant Global Medical Affairs Capabilities (GMAC) stakeholders to ensure a consistent verbalization process for new hires as well as tenured RMSD with respect to new data/indications/disease areas

  • Serving as a key scientific interface between GMSA and Headquarters functions and the US field

  • Collecting and communicating scientific insights from US field engagements to inform company strategies

  • At the request of the GMSA Global Director of Scientific Affairs (GDSA), providing Investigator Studies support for assigned TA that may include Areas of Interest (AOI) consultation and dissemination, MISP data highlights/updates/training, and scientific review aligned with incumbent expertise

Education Requirement

  • Advanced degree (e.g., MD, PhD, PharmD) relevant to the TA-specific disease area and recognized medical expertise in the TA

Experience and Skills


  • Minimum five years of medical affairs or equivalent clinical/research experience

  • Minimum three years working in TA (clinical, research, or pharmaceutical environment) or within a highly relevant TA with demonstrated scientific acumen

  • Demonstrated ability to interpret and execute strategy

  • Ability to clearly articulate complex scientific concepts one to one and in group settings

  • Leading complex projects with demonstrated ability to handle multiple projects and priorities simultaneously and to function in a fast-paced environment

  • Demonstrated ability to work in a complex organizational environment and to effectively operate in a team-oriented structure promoting inclusion, maintaining trust, and respecting others

  • Strategic relationship and networking skills to effectively work across a heavily matrixed organization

  • Knowledge of US healthcare system, national and society treatment guidelines, clinical research processes, FDA regulations, and OIG guidelines

  • Strong interpersonal, verbal, and written communication skills


  • Field MA

  • University-level teaching

  • Understanding of adult learning principles and innovative delivery platforms

  • Pharmaceutical industry training organizations

  • Ability to learn about new subject areas and environments quickly and comprehensively

  • Ability to work well independently across several projects and address complex problems with discipline

  • Excellent Word, PowerPoint, and Excel skills

We are a research-driven biopharmaceutical company. Our mission is built on the simple premise that if we “follow the science” that great medicines can make a significant impact to our world. We believe that a research-driven enterprise dedicated to world-class science can succeed by inventing medicine and vaccine innovations that make a difference for patients across the globe.

Who we are …

We are known as Merck & Co., Inc., Kenilworth, New Jersey, USA in the United States and Canada and MSD everywhere else. For more than a century, we have been inventing for life, bringing forward medicines and vaccines for many of the world's most challenging diseases. Today, our company continues to be at the forefront of research to deliver innovative health solutions and advance the prevention and treatment of diseases that threaten people and animals around the world.

What we look for …

In a world of rapid innovation, we seek brave Inventors who want to make an Impact in all aspects of our business, enabling breakthroughs that will affect generations to come. We encourage you to bring your disruptive thinking, collaborative spirit and diverse perspective to our organization. Together we will continue Inventing For Life, Impacting Lives while Inspiring Your Career Growth .

Invent. Impact. Inspire.


In accordance with Managers' Policy - Job Posting and Employee Placement, all employees subject to this policy are required to have a minimum of twelve (12) months of service in current position prior to applying for open positions.

If you have been offered a separation benefits package, but have not yet reached your separation date and are offered a position within the salary and geographical parameters as set forth in the Summary Plan Description (SPD) of your separation package, then you are no longer eligible for your separation benefits package. To discuss in more detail, please contact your HRBP or Talent Acquisition Advisor.

Current Employees apply HERE ($1533/rel-task/3001$14.htmld)

Current Contingent Workers apply HERE ($4020.htmld)

US and Puerto Rico Residents Only:

Our company is committed to inclusion, ensuring that candidates can engage in a hiring process that exhibits their true capabilities. Please click here ( if you need an accommodation during the application or hiring process.

For more information about personal rights under Equal Employment Opportunity, visit:

EEOC Poster (

EEOC GINA Supplement​

OFCCP EEO Supplement (

We are proud to be a company that embraces the value of bringing diverse, talented, and committed people together. The fastest way to breakthrough innovation is when diverse ideas come together in an inclusive environment. We encourage our colleagues to respectfully challenge one another’s thinking and approach problems collectively. We are an equal opportunity employer, committed to fostering an inclusive and diverse workplace.

Search Firm Representatives Please Read Carefully

Merck & Co., Inc., Kenilworth, NJ, USA, also known as Merck Sharp & Dohme Corp., Kenilworth, NJ, USA, does not accept unsolicited assistance from search firms for employment opportunities. All CVs / resumes submitted by search firms to any employee at our company without a valid written search agreement in place for this position will be deemed the sole property of our company. No fee will be paid in the event a candidate is hired by our company as a result of an agency referral where no pre-existing agreement is in place. Where agency agreements are in place, introductions are position specific. Please, no phone calls or emails.

Employee Status:



No relocation

VISA Sponsorship:


Travel Requirements:


Flexible Work Arrangements:

Remote Work


Valid Driving License:

Hazardous Material(s):

Number of Openings:


Requisition ID: R120895