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Pharma must re-think marketing approach as value-based assessment looms

NICE changes will have substantial impact on marketers

Online Physician CommunitiesThe public are being asked to give their opinion on how the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) should address two new elements of its value-based assessment scheme, which will change the way it recommends new medicines and other treatments in the NHS.

Obtaining the public's feedback on these key elements – namely 'the burden of illness and 'wider societal impact' – is designed to help NICE to focus on the cost-savings and benefits that new medicines can bring throughout the total care pathway.  

But what will value-based assessment, which is due to be launched in the autumn, mean for pharma marketers and how should they approach the issue? I believe that it will have a substantial effect on pharma's marketing tactics, forcing companies to re-think the way they approach doctors.

Rather than looking at how it can persuade doctors to prescribe more of its products, pharma will need to work in a much more targeted way, which will involve helping doctors to identify the patients who will derive the greatest benefits from its drugs.

In order to achieve this, pharma marketing teams will have to think about their brand messages much more carefully and target them more specifically. This will require them to invest in research to better understand patients' needs and prescribers' attitudes around disease and therapy areas.

To convince doctors of the value of its products and services, pharma must also respond positively to their demands for more data on drugs and greater transparency on patient outcomes. This will help pharma to close the loop by demonstrating how product investment measures up against improvements in health and wellbeing, and savings on other healthcare costs throughout the care pathway.

Independent online professional networks, which are one of the most trusted sources of information for doctors, can play a pivotal role by enabling pharma to share knowledge in a targeted and transparent way that is built on a clear understanding of doctors' clinical needs.

By Dr Tim Ringrose, CEO of M3 Europe.

For more information on M3, the global provider of technology services in healthcare, and its new European Division which includes www.doctors.net.uk, www.mdlinx.com and www.networksinhealth.com, please call Tim Ringrose on +44 (0)1235 828400, or email Tim.ringrose@eu.m3.com

25th April 2014

From: Marketing

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