Patient Experience

Are Your Patients Prepared for Treatment? A Simple 5-Step Framework for Gathering Patient Feedback

Treatment preparedness is the ultimate goal of Pharma patient support services. Use this 5-step framework to gather patient feedback and determine if your patients feel ready to begin treatment.

Sean McDade, PhD

Sean McDade, PhD

Founder & CEO, PeopleMetrics

At PeopleMetrics, we talk to Pharmaceutical manufacturers often about using a well-designed patient feedback system to measure the effectiveness of the support services they offer to patients.

Indeed, the patient experience matters. A lot.

Patients who have a good experience with patient services are much more likely to onboard onto new medication and adhere over time.

Patients who had a poor experience are much less likely to onboard and adhere.

So what are the best questions to ask patients about their experience with patient support services?

At PeopleMetrics, we have developed a "Patient Hierarchy of Needs" model that helps answer this question...

The Patient Hierarchy of Needs

Our model is based on thousands of patient surveys across a wide range of Pharmaceutical manufacturers.

It’s a similar concept to Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs, whereby certain needs need to be fulfilled before higher order needs matter.

In the diagram below, you can see how this works:

PeopleMetrics Patient Hierarchy of Needs

The model begins with the most fundamental patient need – financial security. Patients who feel like they can afford the medication are able to move up to the next level.

The next need is the patient being able to receive logistical support. This means the patient knows where to get their medication and can do so in a timeframe that meets their disease state.

After that, medication administration is paramount. The patient must know how to administer their medication. This is especially important if the medication is an injectable.

The fourth level of needs focuses on the support system offered. Patients need to feel like they can easily get their questions answered. Depending on how you deliver the support services, this could range from dedicated case managers for rare disease medicines to mobile apps for mass market products.

The final and highest order patient need is confidence. At the end of the day, this is the ultimate need that patient support services must fulfill – making patients confident that they are prepared to begin treatment.

So, which questions do you ask specifically?

Ones that help you understand if you fulfilled each of the needs in the model above!

These blog posts dive into some of the specific questions we ask to better understand each of the 5 patient needs:

  1. Introduction to PeopleMetrics' Patient Hierarchy of Needs
  2. Level 1: Financial Security
  3. Level 2: Logistical Support
  4. Level 3: Medication Administration
  5. Level 4: Support System
  6. Level 5: Confidence

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About the Author

Sean McDade, PhD is the author of Listen or Die: 40 Lessons That Turn Customer Feedback Into Gold. He founded PeopleMetrics in 2001 and is the architect of the company’s customer experience management (CEM) software platform. As CEO, he guides the company’s vision and strategy. Sean has over 20 years of experience helping companies measure and improve the customer experience. Earlier in his career, he spent five years at the Gallup Organization, where he was the practice leader of their consulting division. His company offers CEM software with advanced machine learning solutions and hands-on analytical support to help companies make sense of their CX data. Sean holds a Ph.D. in Business Administration with a specialization in marketing science from Temple University in Philadelphia. He has published eight articles in peer-reviewed scholarly journals and has taught over 25 marketing classes. Sean was named a 40 under 40 award recipient of the Philadelphia region. He is an active Angel Investor, including investments in Tender Greens, CloudMine and Sidecar.

Topic: Pharma CX

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