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May 05, 2014
Patients Greatly Value Services When They Get Them, but They Want More (2 of 4)
By: Shawn Roman

According to the results of our survey of 2,000 US patients, the vast majority doesn’t just want patient services—they expect them. So, when patients do get these services, how satisfied are they with them? In short, they’re very satisfied, and are willing to divulge personal health information if it means they’ll receive more relevant services.

Product information receives top satisfaction ratings
Our survey finds that of the patients who receive services:

  • A sizable majority—70–80 percent—express satisfaction with all of the services used.

  • Satisfaction rates of product information rank highest at 80 percent. Rewards programs, access to patient support forums and in-home nursing support received a 70 percent satisfaction rating.

  • Less used services, such as access to clinical trials and financial assistance, posted the lowest satisfaction ratings at 63 percent, which notably, is still high.

Patients willing to give up personal information to get the services they want
Patients value services so much that more than six in 10 say they’re willing to provide information on their health to receive improved or free services. What these patients recognize is that to be more relevant and useful, services need to reflect current and accurate health information, which must be provided in exchange for these valuable services.

When it comes to relevance, the success of one leading global pharma company’s drug relies heavily on it. The company is using patient services to launch an anti-obesity drug in the United States and its success requires tailoring communications to meet individual patient preferences. Accenture is helping meet that goal by providing patient services across multiple channels, including the Web, e-mail, direct mail and inbound/outbound call centers. The program is expected to increase patient adherence by 30 percent.

Another example of the power of relevant information is Forest Laboratories’ patient support program. To improve patient compliance and increase awareness of its chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) therapies, Forest Labs is launching a patient support program that answers questions from patients about their treatments. This program enables Forest Labs to reach out directly to patients and give them specific answers they are looking for regarding their COPD treatment, resulting in a more productive and collaborative relationship.

Clearly, the desire for services is there, and patients’ willingness to share medical information with pharmaceutical companies is a significant opportunity to collaborate and deliver better patient outcomes. Giving patients what they want, however, is only part of the equation. To be relevant to today’s ‘always on’ patients, pharmaceutical companies will need to provide information to patients in the ways in which they want to receive it. Join me next week when I take a closer look at connected patients and what they mean to pharma companies.

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