Hoss Sooudi, General Manager of EngagedMedia
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What do patients really want from pharma?
Today, most of us have become digital natives—seamlessly integrating mobile experiences into our daily lives. Many of us are also patients and caregivers. This represents an opportunity for pharma to offer mobile-first approaches to engage healthcare consumers through experiences that are relevant, convenient, and above all, valuable enough to patients to justify any type of relationship with pharma utilizing an ongoing engagement.
The key is to provide a user experience that delivers relevance, convenience and value into each touchpoint, and helps grow adherence and brand loyalty for our clients as a byproduct – not as the only aim. Frankly, patients want clear value propositions from pharma before pharma can expect any real engagement from patients. Delivering that first and foremost, we’ve found that patients are more than willing to engage, opening the door to enduring patient relationships instead of a set of transactions.
Relevance to the point of delight
Part of our strategy at EngagedMedia™ is to start with empathy, looking through the lens of users as consumers first, then as patients – and attempting to understand their prescription support needs to provide an improved experience. Early on, we focused on helping clear common barriers, providing actionable information, and offering convenience. We found that this method of value delivery gave way to measurable adherence – and continued to build relationships based on timely, data-driven and personally relevant mobile services.
Now, having interacted with millions of consumers, we’ve found that patients are eager for even the most basic prescription support. In fact, recent survey data from West shows that 64% of patients with chronic conditions expect to receive medication refill and pick up reminders.
Even in their most basic forms, our EngagedPatient™ programs include real-time personalized messaging based on each individual’s unique situation and pharmacy claim data—not just reminders, but also the ability to conveniently act on these reminders. We also provide wrap-around support in the form of information, guidance and convenience through services that range from multimedia product usage tips to real-time insurance coverage assistance, thereby making it easier for people to stay on a prescribed therapy.
Capabilities like these that are built around an individual patient’s experience are core to our platform and are proven to drive patient engagement and the metrics that our clients want. In fact, when compared to non-engaged patients, patients enrolled in our EngagedPatient programs refill their prescriptions on average at a rate 35% higher and 74% faster, and stay on therapy 27% longer (which includes both non-engaged and engaged patients receiving the very same copay offer and other external messaging).
For patients this also means better healthcare experiences and outcomes, and the feeling of being better able to navigate and control what can often be a confusing, frustrating process.
Listening to the data to drive value
As a mobile-based company, we have the privilege of being in the pockets of millions of patients, gaining insights every day on how they engage with providers and pharmacies throughout the prescription process. We’re constantly applying these insights to establish or improve best practices in every interaction we have in terms of messaging, timing, sequencing, capabilities or tone. The proof is in the metrics: in a recent program that we transitioned from a previous messaging system, we saw our patient-centric and data-driven approach improve a brand’s Rx abandonment rate by 79 percent.
Our ongoing passion and sensitivity to patient needs also led us to develop two of our latest technologies, RxProximity™ and RxPush™. These are geolocation alerts and device notifications based on digital wallet usage, both of which stemmed from our analysis of emerging channels. Eighteen months later, they are now the most-requested modules to our new programs.
Positioning our clients’ brands as the hero
Brands often approach us when they are facing a challenge with consumer engagement and support. They may need to maintain brand loyalty and market share as they near loss of exclusivity, or boost a launch campaign through personalized, value-added patient communication. They realize (based on our metrics) that patients in our programs are the most informed about their prescription process and that in every communication, we position the brand and its support programs as providing a higher level of service, information, and convenience to patients. Thus, most patients don’t know who we are – they just know that our brand clients are the ones helping to make things easier for them, which is another way we ensure that the operational necessities of the industry don’t hamper a seamless approach to patient relationships.
When patients have a simpler, easier experience, they are more likely to remain on therapy and fulfill their health potential. Ultimately this alignment is why our platform continues to be so successful: we help make sure that when patients win, everybody wins.