Next-level analytics part 2: Is your patient support program data actionable?
Data is only as good as the action it inspires. That is especially the case with patient support programs, which rely on analytics to help manufacturers navigate access and adherence barriers.
With the right partner and analytics program—including key metrics discussed in Part 1 of this series—manufacturers can pivot their services to respond to real-time trends and needs, making the program a powerful force for improving outcomes.
But what can your program data really do? Access to the right analytics and support from your patient services partner can drive three important data-driven decisions for your program:
1. Where to invest to increase awareness and adoption
In understanding that patient decisions are highly subjective, the interpretation of data is vital in understanding how best to reach targeted patient populations.
What you can discover: What factors are common denominators when access and adherence barriers arise?
The data you'll need: Historical data on product uptake, speed to therapy and dropoff can be analyzed regionally to show areas with low adoption of a therapy. From there, manufacturers can gain insights into patient behaviors, the different types of non-adherence barriers impacting patients, as well as provider and specialty pharmacy workflows to understand where patterns exist and identify education and engagement tactics.
The analytics in action: The data noted above can be utilized to help manufacturers identify unmet patient needs in specific geographies and serve as an indicator to boost patient and provider engagement and awareness education. Knowing these metrics enables real-time marketing strategy changes, such as launching an education campaign or co-pay program, or even additional training for field teams.
Manufacturers spend years developing innovative therapies and millions to commercialize them. Yet only 40% of healthcare providers are “very aware" of manufacturer-sponsored patient services. Understanding provider engagement levels, product uptake and patient access barriers may be the first step in building a concrete program foundation.
2. How to allocate program resources
There is no one-size-fits-all approach to patient support. And program management is all about optimization. Program data can help manufacturers align the right resources to patients who need the most support.
What you can discover: Where can you introduce technology that blends with skilled and compassionate counselor support to effectively speed access to therapy and provide outreach to patients?
The data you'll need: Evaluating key metrics such as benefit verification (BV) turnaround times or field force performance can clarify lingering questions about optimal staff size, technology usage and program design. If you aren't meeting your key performance indicators (KPIs) for BV turnaround times, consider optimizing workflow with appropriately sourced counselors or, if it's right for your product, an electronic benefit verification solution. Incremental changes and upfront investments that help provide data throughout the patient journey can yield mighty impact in the future.
The analytics in action: In some cases, client analytics have helped identify that BV turnaround time was also impacted by providers struggling to complete patient support program enrollment forms accurately or completely, delaying a patient's starting therapy. Armed with information, field representatives can be deployed to spend time with providers to walk them through enrollment, educate them on the program and even go back to manufacturers with recommendations for form adjustments.
Because insights show where and when demand is rising, keeping a regular pulse on real-time analytics can help you make the most of your resources.
3. When to expand patient assistance
Patient assistance programs are a vital piece of the puzzle in helping patients navigate access to and afford their therapies. Data and analytics help inform when patient assistance may be needed for different programs or signal when it might be appropriate to reallocate resources elsewhere.
What you can discover: How do you support affordability for as many patients as possible?
The data you'll need: Your program data can show you what time(s) of year your patient assistance program (PAP) sees the biggest influx of patients or significant decline in adherence. Understanding and analyzing this flow can help manufacturers understand if the PAP is too inclusive or restrictive. Combining these fundamental data points with industry expertise from a qualified partner provides insight into when, for example, foundation support may have run out for the year and your PAP budget could be spread thin.
The analytics in action: Your patient services provider should be able to offer both insights into shifting PAP trends and compliant program design expertise in the preparations for helping patients navigate affordability barriers.
The crucial role of expertise
In these three areas and beyond, the right patient support program partner will help manufacturers build a lasting strategy for removing barriers and accelerating speed to therapy. But delivering data is only part of the process; combining analytics with recommendations from a team of clinical and data science experts is essential.