3 Ways to Adapt to Post-Pandemic Trends Using Longitudinal Patient Data
Patient health, healthcare professional (HCP) behavior, and payer access have all changed due to the pandemic.
Using longitudinal patient data across therapeutic areas through Veeva Compass, which includes prescription and medical claims for 300 million patients, more than 42 billion records, and more than 2.7 million doctors in the U.S., helps to show how these changes have affected life sciences. We also validated Compass data against Covid-19 diagnosis and vaccine trends in public data.
In a recent PMSA presentation and Veeva webinar on how to adapt to post-pandemic patient and prescriber behavior, we shared key findings and learnings focused on three areas:
- Patient health: What happened to patient health in different therapeutic areas, especially specialty and oncology?
- HCP behavior: How are HCPs adopting digital ways of working?
- Access: How is the payer landscape changing?
Here are highlights to help you use longitudinal patient data to evolve moving forward.
Adapt to post-pandemic patient behavior
Patient diagnosis and treatment has decreased in some specialty therapeutic areas like oncology and multiple sclerosis. Specifically, comparing 2021 to 2019 treatment rates, there was a 5% decrease in oncology treatment and a 29% decrease in M.S. treatment.
These data show that getting patients back to diagnose and treat is extremely important. Pre-pandemic, patient journey analysis would start from diagnosis. Today, it’s necessary to understand patient experience before diagnosis, through treatment, and beyond.
How to adapt
One key way to adapt is to develop programs to drive patient awareness to early symptoms of complex diseases. You need to analyze and understand the true longitudinal patient experience to achieve this. Accessing comprehensive patient data – not limited by your brand or market indication, can give you a more complete understanding of patients, so that you can better help them navigate hurdles to treatment.
Adapt to post-pandemic HCP behavior
Two key trends emerged during the pandemic: Telehealth and digital HCP engagement.
HCPs rapidly started seeing patients virtually during the earliest phases of the pandemic. Telehealth also peaked during periods when cases were high and during Delta and Omicron variants.
Telehealth adoption remained at a high more than 20% level across the board. Patient data also show that nearly 70% of HCPs who adopted telehealth during the pandemic continue to do so today. Interestingly, HCPs are less likely to switch therapies during telehealth visits.
After vaccines became widely available, the rate of HCP digital engagement decreased to a third of the rate during the initial lockdown phase. Hybrid engagement remains steady post-Omicron.
How to adapt
Telehealth adoption and hybrid engagement are here to stay. On-demand access to up-to-date patient data can help track and support switching therapies when doctors see patients virtually. Pharma companies can also better understand and optimize for care, digital adoption, and field engagement with continued tracking of HCP behavior.
Adapt to post-pandemic payer trends
The payer landscape changed from 2019 to late 2021. More patients enrolled in Medicaid.
Among the top commercial payers, patient data also showed a few interesting trends. While overall patients decreased, it was to a lesser extent for top commercial payers. Their market share increased during the initial lockdown. Afterward, top payers converged in market share. There was a 2% decrease from the previous 9% gap.
How to adapt
Now is a good time to refresh your payer analysis, and rethink your prioritization among payers and price implications when it comes to rebating. When patients switch from commercial to Medicaid, it is also important to continue to engage and educate them to help them stay on therapy when needed.
Prepare for future market events
Data and analytics teams can adapt to address future market events by:
- Utilizing data sources without unnecessary restriction on data access
- Analyzing, reporting, and building triggers on up-to-date data
- Adopting agile analytics and data infrastructure
This way, you can track and understand patient journeys, HCP behaviors, and payer landscape in a more comprehensive and proactive way.
Veeva Compass Patient data gives you comprehensive, unlimited access to data that’s always up to date. When your data isn’t limited to your brand and market indications, you can support more agile analytics and better understand patient and prescriber behavior.