Leveraging Mobile Patient Support to Boost Adherence
As the COVID virus and its variants continue to threaten lives, recent data found that a simple text message “nudge” can help increase the chance a person will get vaccinated and that this strategy can help close the gap between people’s intentions and their actions.
Similarly, when it comes to increasing patient adherence to specialty medications, text messages, as well as other mobile tools such as live chat with nurses and case managers, access to copay assistance, and the ability to connect patients with other people experiencing similar challenges, leverage the ubiquity of smartphones to integrate the therapy journey into patients’ daily routines.
A study of 50 major brands by HelpAround found the majority of patients (78%) primarily used their mobile devices to access pharma brand websites, while only 22% used their desktops. Meeting patients where they are with an easy way to access prescription support services and connect them to alerts, reminders, and support communities, enables them to take a more active role in their own care, ultimately helping to boost adherence.
Because the amount of time can be significant between when patients first receive their prescription and when they start therapy, empowering them with always-on mobile tools allows them to check in or digitally raise their hand for a case manager to call them back at their convenience. The visibility into the process that the mobile platform provides helps keep patients engaged and ultimately can reduce abandonment.
Platforms like ConnectiveRx’s mobileCare Manager can connect in one place the individual silos that are supporting patients across their journey and serve as a data and communication aggregator or data warehouse for patients. With all of the relevant patient information feeding into a single service to keep patients well informed, that single source of truth will benefit not just patients and providers, but it will also give brands more leverage to find the best-in-class option for each one of those silos. And it allows patients to feel confident in the transparency of their medication journey.
Pharma brands are eager to find a comprehensive solution with many areas of expertise, such as access services, clinical education, copay, field reimbursement support, or adherence services. This is an opportunity for brands to build their own best-in-class solution for specific patients and providers by choosing the industry-leading vendors in each category to support every step of their journey. The ability to tie these disparate elements together in one coherent communication package like mobileCare Manager not only benefits patients, but the data that feeds back into this mobile platform also provides another brand advantage.
With payer processes typically nebulous to patients, notifications can let them know when various obstacles have been overcome or if the approval process has been delayed at a particular point. Throughout the process, push notifications delivered to patients’ smartphones can keep them apprised of the benefits investigation and where their medication is overall in the approval process.
Should a patient not be eligible for copay support, his or her financial assistance summary can be tailored to outline other potential options, such as a Medicare low-income subsidy, third-party foundation support or another alternatives. In this situation, mobile patient messaging can serve as a way to arrange a phone counseling session with a case manager and create a more personalized experience in what often can be an onerous and complicated situation. The mobile platform can help keep the patient engaged in the process, enable them see who is reaching out to increase the response rate, and facilitate appointment scheduling.
With 20-30% of prescriptions never filled and approximately 50% of medications for chronic conditions not taken as prescribed, meeting patients where they are to help them through their medication journey has never been more critical. As patients become increasingly comfortable relying on their smartphones for remote medical care, pharmaceutical brands that don’t incorporate the mobile channel into their patient support programs risk losing patients to those that do.