PHARMACY

Patients expect personalized approach to health care, study finds

BY Alaric DeArment

NEW YORK — As patients face higher out-of-pocket costs for drugs and more complex treatment plans, they expect greater focus on their needs, like they would get from retail, which creates new opportunities for drug manufacturers, according to a new report from PwC.

The report, by PwC’s Health Research Institute, found that drug companies would need to pursue a more sophisticated patient segmentation strategy, focused more on the customer, resulting in patients who "own" their treatment plans and better manage their conditions. the report was based on a survey of more than 700 U.S. consumers regarding their preferences and behavior in selection and use of drug treatments.

"Patients are exerting greater control over their health care, and they want their medication experience to be effective, personalized and meaningful," PwC principal Karla Anderson said. "If their expectations are met, they’re more likely to follow the proper course of treatment and remain engaged with customers far longer."

Consumers, the report found, expect the same treatment they receive in other settings, such as retail, banking and travel. They are willing to pay 19% more for a "no wait time" prescription, while affluent baby boomers and Generation Xers with chronic conditions will pay 52% more.

Other findings include that treatment costs are the top reason why people stop taking medications; that baby boomers with multiple chronic conditions have less medication adherence than average, but are willing to address it, and some 41% want do-it-yourself pharmacy health screening stations, while 37% want a mobile app to monitor vitals and provide contextual understanding of their prescriptions. Meanwhile, almost all respondents said drug companies did not play a role in their diagnosis and treatment decisions, suggesting that current pharmaceutical education and communication had limited effect. 

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PHARMACY

Hospira sales up by 1.4% in third quarter

BY Alaric DeArment

LAKE FOREST, Ill. — Hospira had sales of $1 billion in third quarter 2013, the generic drug maker said.

Hospira, which specializes in making generic injectable drugs, as well as biosimilars for the European market, said the sales figures for the quarter were a 1.4% increase over the $994 million in sales reported in third quarter 2012. Profits for the quarter were $84.5 billion, compared with $78.4 billion during the same period last year.

"The third quarter was one of continued progress in several areas," Hospira CEO F. Michael Ball said. "We were especially pleased to receive European approval in the quarter for our biosimilar infliximab, Inflectra, the first monoclonal antibody to be approved in Europe."

 

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PHARMACY

Aprecia appoints Don Wetherhold as CEO

BY Alaric DeArment

MASON, Ohio — Aprecia Pharmaceuticals Co. has appointed Don Wetherhold as its CEO, the company said Monday.

Wetherhold is returning to Aprecia after a term as SVP long-term care at Omnicare; prior to that, he was Aprecia’s corporate commercialization officer.

"We are thrilled to have Don back at Aprecia, and we look forward to the leadership he will bring to this role," Aprecia chairman E. Thomas Arington. "Don was instrumental in devising our commercialization strategy at Aprecia."

Aprecia’s main product is ZipDose, a fast-melting drug-delivery technology.

"I’m excited to be back at Aprecia for a number of reasons, not the least of which is the rare opportunity to be the first at something and redefine a market, which is what our breakthrough 3DP product development and manufacturing system has the potential to do," Wheterhold said.

 

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