Reaching and educating physicians is a number one priority for pharmaceutical reps and MSLs. Sometimes pharma marketers focus so much on reaching physicians that they forget almost completely about the patients.
Many pharma companies don’t believe that developing relevant and easy-to-understand patient education materials is important for their marketing goals. Here are the reasons why patient education should be at the center of every pharma marketing campaign.
Patient education increases adherence
Studies have shown that around 50% of patients fail to comply with their recommended treatment. People who drop off their prescribed therapies are causing damage to both the pharmaceutical sector and their own health. Between 100-300 billion dollars are lost in the US due to patient non-adherence every year.
Nonadherence is also known to contribute to higher mortality rates. Low levels of health literacy and poor patient education are one of the causes of patient non-adherence. When people don’t understand the benefits of the treatment and have unrealistic expectations they are less likely to remain committed.
But if patients know what to expect they will more likely stick to the recommended treatment.
Patients have to understand the importance of taking their medications and how quickly to expect the benefits. Better patient education and engagement can contribute to better outcomes and motivate patients to follow their treatment regimens thus contributing to higher profit for pharmaceutical companies.
HCPs need patient education materials
Patient education materials are one of the first things physicians are looking for from sales reps. Physicians need brochures, posters even videos they can show to their patients to help them better understand and manage their condition.
Good patient education material will provide your reps access to physicians and help them achieve permanent relationships. Providing patient materials will help your sales rep reach physicians more often and give them additional opportunities to inform them about your brand.
Another reason why people drop their treatment is the inability to cope with side effects. Better patient education can help patients deal with uncomfortable side effects. First, they’ll know what to expect which will help them prepare for what’s to come.
But the effects of good patient education don’t end there.
Pharma and physicians should also make sure to teach patients how to manage negative side effects to make sure that they minimize the damage to their overall health.
Help patients make better decisions
The time when patients listened and blindly followed doctors’ advice is gone. Nowadays patients have become empowered decision-makers actively involved in the selection of their treatment.
Even before they enter the doctor’s office patients spend hours and hours on the internet learning about their condition, symptoms, and treatment options. And their research in many ways determines their future course of action.
But with so much information on the web, it can be hard for patients to determine which is the correct information. The only way to make sure that patients are getting the important information they need is by providing them yourself.
Creating killer patient materials will ensure that your patients are receiving the right message about your pharma brand.
Hope that this blog post convinced you to add patient education to your pharma marketing strategy. Patient education has a profound influence on everything from patient adherence to access to physicians, and it can improve your marketing goals in more ways than one.