Improving Patient Outcomes Engaging Patients to Improve Adherence
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A conversation with several speakers from eyeforpharma’s 7th Annual Patient Adherence & Engagement Summit. We will discuss the issues related to the latest strategies to boost adherence and improve patient health outcomes, especially from a patient’s point of view, plus preview the topics that will be/have been discussed at this conference.

Invited participants include Ray Bullman, Executive Vice President, National Council on Patient Information and Education (NCPIE); John Walsh, President, COPD Foundation; Jeanne Barnett, Founder,;Natalie Napolitano, Associate Director of Research and Health Management, COPD Foundation; and Laura Cranston, Executive Director, Pharmacy Quality Alliance. (See bios.)

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Medication non-adherence — ie, patients not taking their medications as prescribed by their doctors — is one of the most significant problems in healthcare. It is responsible for over $150 billion in lost pharmaceutical revenues per year, not to mention an estimated $290 billion in otherwise avoidable medical spending in the US per year. Up to 25% of prescriptions are never filled, and average medication compliance, for people who do fill their prescriptions, is only about 50% for most chronic diseases.

The recent economic downturn has exacerbated the problem according to a recent survey conducted by Consumer reports. That survey of over 2,000 random adults showed that consumers are economizing on healthcare by cutting corners in ways that may be dangerous. In the past year,

  • 27% failed to comply with prescriptions; non-compliance was most prevalent among patients under the age of 65 without a drug benefit (46%), patients with a household income under $40,000 (34%), patients aged 18-54 years (33%), and patients whose monthly out-of-pocket Rx spending was greater than $50 (33%).
  • The most common actions reported to save money on medications: skipped filling a prescription (16%overall, 38% among those younger than 65 without drug coverage), taken an expired medication (12%),skipped a scheduled dosage (12%), cut prescribed pills in half (8%), and shared a prescription with someone else to save money (4%).

Questions/Topics Discussed

  • What’s new in advancing adherence at the point of of prescribing and along the patient pathway? What needs to change? What’s driving change?
  • How can patient education about medication improve adherence and what should be the role of pharmaceutical companies and other stakeholders?
  • How does peer health coaching enhance adherence?
  • How can pharma companies best collaborate with patient groups such as the COPD Foundation to guarantee the best outcomes for patients? Review of the DRIVE4COPD collaboration between Boehringer Ingelheim Pharmaceuticals and the COPD Foundation.
  • What are some of the national initiatives in place to measure and improve patients’ adherence to chronic medications?
  • How do community pharmacies implement innovative strategies to support patients’ in maintaining high levels of adherence?
  • What can pharma learn from online patient communities? How can active participation in social health networks improve patient adherence?

Guest Bio

Ray BullmanRay Bullman is the Executive Vice President of the National Council on Patient Information and Education (NCPIE). NCPIE, organized in 1982, is a non-profit coalition of diverse member organizations committed to improving communication of information on appropriate use of medicines to consumers and health care professionals. Under Mr. Bullman’s leadership, NCPIE, in August 2007 released the second in a series of comprehensive reports entitled, “Enhancing Prescription Medicine Adherence: A National Action Plan.” The report includes a series of 10 action steps for diverse stakeholder organizations to address to improve medication adherence. An initial NCPIE report on adherence improvement was released in 1996. In that same year, Mr. Bullman collaborated with the American Medical Association on the development of AMA’s “Guidelines for Physicians for Counseling Patients about Prescription Medications in the Ambulatory Setting.” Mr. Bullman is currently serving as the co-chair of the chronic conditions working group in a multi-stakeholder collaboration with the National Consumers League to develop / launch a national medication adherence campaign in 2011.

Jeanne BarnettJeanne Barnett is the creator of a large and vibrant online community for people affected by cystic fibrosis. Since its beginnings in 1996, has grown to over 11,000 members with a database of more than two million messages. Jeanne has developed a deep understanding of e-patients, their subgroups, needs and means of communication. As a visionary and pioneer in Internet health, Jeanne has grown this social health community and helped bring the e-patient -the electronic or empowered patient- into conversation with Industry. Jeanne is a graduate of Fordham University. She taught high school mathematics and computer science before starting, which owns over 100 niche medical domains. Jeanne will be presenting with a Health Opinion Leader from the CF site.

Laura CranstonLaura Cranston serves as the Executive Director of PQA, Inc. which is a pharmacy quality alliance established in April 2006, to improve health care quality and patient safety. PQA, as an alliance, works through a collaborative process with a broad range of stakeholders to reach a consensus strategy for measuring performance at the pharmacy and pharmacist-levels; collecting data in the least burdensome way; and reporting meaningful information to consumers, pharmacists, employers, payers, and other healthcare decision-makers to help make informed choices, improve outcomes and stimulate the development of new payment models. For over a decade, Laura served as the Vice President of Pharmacy Affairs for the National Association of Chain Drug Stores (NACDS), a trade organization with a membership base that operates over 30,000 retail community pharmacies. While at NACDS, she was responsible for developing policy and positions, in concert with NACDS chain corporations, on issues that included, but were not limited to: third party issues, state board of pharmacy regulations, DUR/counseling, training pharmacy technicians, and legislation to establish a Medicare prescription drug benefit.

Natalie NapolitanoNatalie Napolitanois the Associate Director of Research and Health Management with the COPD Foundation and also holds a clinical position as a Registered-Neonatal/Pediatric Specialist employed at Inova Fairfax Hospital/Inova Fairfax Hospital for Children. Natalie serves on several state and national committees through the American Association for Respiratory Care and has spoke nationally for Respiratory, Nursing and Physician groups on Pediatric Respiratory Care, Protocol Development and Outcomes Measures, and Grass Roots Lobbying.

John WalshJohn W. Walsh is the Co-founder and President of the COPD Foundation, a not-for-profit organization dedicated to developing and supporting programs which improve the quality of life through research, education, early diagnosis and enhanced therapy for persons whose lives are impacted by Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease. He is also the Co-founder of the Alpha-1 Foundation (a research organization) and AlphaNet, Inc. (a unique not-for-profit disease management services company run by and for patients). He is a member of the NIH Director’s Council of Public Representatives and the NIH’s Council of Councils, is a member of the US COPD Coalition Executive Committee, Past-Chair of the International COPD Coalition (2006-2008), Past Chair (2005-2006) of the National Health Council’s Board of Directors, Past Chair and a member of the American Thoracic Society Public Advisory Roundtable (PAR), was the Presidential Appointee (2004-2005) of the American Thoracic Society’s Board of Directors and a Trustee of the Foundation of the American Thoracic Society (2006-2008). He regularly testifies before Congress and advisory groups as a patient advocate. Mr. Walsh was diagnosed with Alpha-1 genetic-related COPD in 1989.

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