Each year, the Patient Services Survey gathers insights from pharmaceutical decision-makers, healthcare providers (HCPs), and industry consultants. The aim is to delve into their annual perspectives on the most pressing issues facing the patient services sector. Through this survey, CareMetx aims to maintain a comprehensive understanding of the industry, allowing us to adapt and respond effectively to its dynamic nature.
This year, the survey asked manufacturers to rate a wide variety of business objectives in terms of the importance to their organization over the next 18 months. What emerged was a clear picture: The current business goals of leading pharmaceutical manufacturers primarily revolve around the patient.
Inside the Data: Understanding Manufacturer Focus on Patient-Centric Care
This year, the highest-rated objective was “increasing patient satisfaction", scoring 4.4 out of 5. Closely following was the goal to enhance support throughout the patient's care journey.
These results underscore the fact that manufacturers recognize the patient’s need for holistic support, enabling them to overcome barriers that can keep them from initiating and staying on their prescribed therapies.
By comparison, reducing the financial impact of copay accumulators and maximizers ranked further down the list in importance this year. Though these financial constraints remain a difficult reality of the current payer landscape, it’s possible that manufacturers are finding that their Hub vendors are providing more effective solutions for this issue as time goes on.
With patient-centric business goals front and center for manufacturers, those objectives are naturally cascading down to the expectations they bring to their Hub-vendor relationships. As manufacturers select a Hub for their patient support programs, especially for complex specialty therapeutics, they assume the vendor will share their patient-centric philosophy and keep the patient at the heart of the drug program.
Are Today’s Hubs Doing Enough?
Whether it’s a newly launching therapy or a mature drug product, the complexity of a therapy demands greater support at the individual patient level. This is especially true at a time when cost pressures are rising and when social determinants of health are creating obstacles that can keep patients from their therapies.
As manufacturers look to their Hubs to mirror a patient-centric approach, effective Hubs are ramping up their capabilities to support a patient-focused experience across a manufacturer’s drug program. Now, it’s assumed a Hub vendor will structure their offerings with the patient in mind, particularly when it comes to understanding each patient as an individual and meeting their needs through services that are personalized and customized to their unique challenges.
That expectation has dramatically altered the criteria for selecting a Hub. In the past, manufacturers tended to focus on capabilities that improve drug access and affordability—most notably, services like efficient benefit verification, prior authorization approval, and financial assistance eligibility assessment.
Today, with more manufacturers viewing these services as table stakes, the bar for defining a patient-centric Hub has been set much higher. In evaluating a Hub to deliver its patient support program, a specialty manufacturer is likely to look for a broader scope of capabilities and services.
For instance, manufacturers now expect the Hub program to reflect an understanding of the medication-taking behaviors that can impact a patient’s ability to initiate and stay on treatment, along with solutions to keep those behaviors from becoming barriers. Manufacturers are also placing greater emphasis on the Hub’s ability to leverage technology to personalize the support provided throughout the patient journey, from intake to outcomes.
Though technology is playing a more integral role in enabling the patient journey to proceed intelligently and efficiently, manufacturers also recognize that patients need personalized, attentive, empathetic support to succeed on a complex therapy. This blending of high-tech and high-touch is fast becoming the hallmark of a best-in-class Hub program.
Depending on the manufacturer’s specific requirements, high-touch support can take various forms. Often, it means the patient support program reflects a deep understanding of the complex journey for a patient on a specialty drug, views the patient personally and holistically, and offers skilled, emphatic support from professionals with the knowledge and expertise to help patients overcome their specific barriers and facilitate a more positive care journey.
The CareMetx 2024 Patient Report delves further into these and other themes that emerged from our findings, reflecting what’s on the minds of leading pharmaceutical manufacturers and healthcare providers. Gain valuable insights on the evolving landscape for specialty drug patient services by downloading the report.