What’s Most Important to Physicians and Practices Post-Pandemic—And How Life Science Experts Can Help

Whether a physician, practice manager, a biller, or coder, every busy day for the entire care team is increasingly fragmented by a myriad of administrative tasks, the technology overhead needed for their work to keep up with the pace of change, an ever-increasing patient volume, and an expanding body of medical knowledge.

As the industry leader powering smarter connections between healthcare providers and life sciences companies, RxVantage recently commissioned a study, The Next Era of Practice and Life Science Engagement. The goal was to examine what practices need in order to maintain patient satisfaction and meet the financial challenges of healthcare today.

Across all stakeholders surveyed, patient satisfaction was named the highest priority at every level of healthcare practices in the U.S., even as the rising cost of healthcare is the practice’s biggest challenge. This study and its findings underscore our own conversations at RxVantage with physicians and practice staff about the information and tools they want and need and how they prefer to access them as the velocity of change in healthcare increases. The non-clinical practice staff is impacting and influencing practice and clinical decision-making more than ever before, making them increasingly critical stakeholders in the practice and broader healthcare ecosystem.

Physicians, practice managers, billers, and coders agreed that patient satisfaction is their highest priority, with 62% of physicians and 40% of practice managers ranking it #1. The groups surveyed also see the rising cost of healthcare as the practice’s biggest challenge, by an overwhelming majority: 70% of physicians, 64% of practice managers and 58% of billers and coders. With increasing concerns about healthcare costs, practice managers, as well as billers and coders, devote the largest portion of their time—23% and 27%, respectively—staying up to date on financial policies and reimbursement.

Opportunities for Life Science Experts

Physicians note connecting with life science experts personally (38%) is important, as is having those experts easily accessible to resolve any urgent queries (36%). They also say that life science experts keep them updated about new treatments and drug developments (42%). Billers and coders like having the ability to receive product/medical device demos from these experts (38%). Practice managers find connecting with life science experts at their convenience (42%) to be a big advantage.

Physicians prefer to receive informative, educational materials, and resources from varying sources: life science experts (50%), their own research (40%), and colleague recommendations (10%). An overwhelming percentage of practice managers—72%—depend on pharma reps for information, more than half (60%) consult clinical health educators and field reimbursement specialists (56%), and almost half typically use information from medical science liaisons (MSLs) (48%) and key opinion leaders (46%) as well. Field reimbursement specialists are the most important information source (65%) for billers and coders, alongside clinical health educators (58%) and life science representatives (55%).

All respondents said that content from life science experts is most helpful in making informed decisions while performing regular tasks, though demand for resources varies. Nearly three- quarters of physicians (72%) and practice managers (70%) find patient assistance programs or patient services most valuable, while Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) billing form examples are most helpful to 53% of billers and coders.

Offerings on up-to-date financial information about authorization and insurance guidelines and reimbursement information ranked highest in importance with physicians, practice managers, and billers and coders.

There is an unmet need among physicians for a variety of patient support resources, especially medication adherence tools, with 43% of physicians interested in using these versus 22% currently using them.

Practices Want a Hybrid of Remote and In-person Interactions

In our current environment which has shifted due to the pandemic, physicians are gravitating towards hybrid engagement models with trusted sources in order to obtain and maintain the necessary body of knowledge to deliver optimal patient care. When asked about preferences for 2022, in-person interactions are widely preferred, though many practices intend to continue remote meetings. Whereas 78% of physicians prefer in-person interaction with pharma reps, 62% are still interested in remote interactions. Three-quarters of practice manager respondents (76%) want a hybrid of in-person and remote interactions with pharma reps.

Practice Workflows Depend on Digital Tools

Two-thirds of practice managers (66%) and billers and coders (65%) and 42% of physicians agree that digital tools that optimize practice workflow significantly reduce the burden on their practice’s staff. Practices appear open-minded to considering tools, as long as they help create efficiency while elevating care.

Moving Forward

Life sciences companies must work to better understand the preferences and meet the needs of the entire team delivering care to patients, not just the clinical staff. Life sciences companies seeking to build a bridge to smarter connections that improve patient care must develop an understanding of the varying needs of all members of the practice and create the tools and support materials necessary to address practices’ unmet needs.

Our study offers life sciences companies a deeper understanding of how important it is to engage with physicians, as well as the practice staff, and offer targeted resources to help them maintain patient satisfaction and meet the financial challenges of healthcare today. With a stronger foundational understanding, life sciences companies will be able to engage with individual care team members the way they prefer and adapt to future access disruptions.

Source:

The Next Era of Practice and Life Science Engagement: RxVantage engaged Clarivate (NYSE: CLVT), a global leader in providing trusted information and insights to accelerate the pace of innovation, to survey and conduct in-depth interviews across a sample of physicians, practice managers, and billers and coders during November – December 2021. The results were weighted to reflect the actual universe of practicing physicians, billers, coders, and practice managers in the U.S. The practices were inclusive of six specialties: oncology, dermatology, rheumatology, gastroenterology, neurology, and endoscopy.

  • Daniel Gilman

    Daniel Gilman, the Co-founder and Chief Executive Officer of RxVantage, envisions a world where healthcare professionals can connect instantly, effortlessly, and securely to any life sciences resource they need to improve patient care—and he has the solution. RxVantage works at the intersection of two exciting and rapidly changing industries—healthcare and technology—and is the only solution transforming the way healthcare professionals and life sciences companies make smarter connections for the betterment of every patient. RxVantage continues to evolve the industry’s standard for engagement among its growing network of 6,000+ leading medical practices with more than 900 life sciences companies.

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