Survey finds that while people believe in the importance of pharma delivering on its patient-centered mission, most are not confident in pharma’s ability to deliver.
This was among the findings of the Aurora Project’s second annual Patient-Centric Benchmark Survey. While highlighting the pharmaceutical industry’s appetite to move the patient-centric agenda forward, it also shows there is currently a gap between reality and perception.
About the survey
The Aurora Project is a non-profit group, founded by eyeforpharma and Excellerate, made up of more than 200 health sector leaders from around the world, aimed at “illuminating the path to patient centricity”.
A total of 1,282 pharma, medical device and associated supplier company employees, as well as patients and patient groups, took the survey between July and November last year.
They were asked to score the degree of patient-centricity in pharma across 10 metrics, and patients consistently rated companies lower than industry employees.
In total, 72% of employees agreed with the statement “my company communicates with care and compassion, transparent and unbiased information on diseases, treatment options and available resources”. Yet only 32% of patients agreed with the equivalent statement.
The key to closing the gap between words and action is adequate training on how to “do” patient centricity, the survey found.
More than half (53%) of the employee participants said they were “actively looking for what to do and how to teach” patient centricity. Just 22% said they knew “exactly what to do” and 16% said they “didn’t know what to do or how to teach it”.
Instead of training on the specifics of how to do something, the reports said companies should focus more on “empowering people with their purpose – with why they are doing it”.
Excellerate’s Managing Director, Jill Donahue, said: “It is then that people will have the creativity, will and desire to develop and implement the ideas to move patient centricity from ideas to action to outcomes.”
An opportunity to do even more for patients
Steps toward patient-centricity are already being taken by biopharmaceutical and medical device companies.
Doug Noland, Executive Director of Patient Experience at Astellas said: “This important study once again highlights a clear gap in the public’s understanding of the biopharmaceutical industry’s contributions, but also illuminates our big opportunity to do ‘even more’ for patients.”
“As we strive to deliver further patient-centered advances to help improve patients’ lives, we must focus our efforts first and foremost on helping our employees connect to their purpose. With this mindset will come new results. It is our role to then support our employees as they discover what they need to do differently and better.”
The need to serve patients more effectively was made abundantly clear when the survey’s co-lead, Jack Whelan, died from cancer before the project was finished.
Dedicating the resulting report to Jack’s memory, John Elliott, said: “Jack’s passion as a patient advocate inspired all of those he touched.”
Click here to read the full report.