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Collaboration seeks to provide insights into physicians' behaviors when engaged in copay and loyalty programs
A potentially valuable matching of services is now in the offing: the management of copay programs by PSKW (Bedminster, NJ), one of the leaders in this specialized field, and physician market research by MD Mindset (Whitehouse Station, NJ), a company that has an extensive physician panel to obtain physician input on pharma activities. Together, the two companies will attempt to provide analytics around the copay decision points: when physicians offer copay information to patients; and how they respond to pharma marketers’ efforts to manage the programs.
According to the PSKW, there is already extensive analytics collected around each instance of a copay offer: typically, each coupon can be tracked as its reimbursement is adjudicated, so that PSKW can report back to the pharma client how the program is progressing, and ultimately what effect it is having on overall marketing levels. More advanced analytics can look into the effects of copay assistance on medication adherence programs.
According to Peter Shaw, MD, president of MD Mindset, his company will bring the “why” and “how” of copay assistance activity into the picture. The company has a panel, called the Nationwide Network of Specialists, that comprises over 175,000 prescribers, broken down by medical specialty. By working with MD Mindset, pharma companies could do predictive studies of the impact of a copay program, tailoring both its messaging and the scope of activity to marketing goals. Both companies allude to the problem of a program that works too well: if too many copay cards are reimbursed, the costs of the overall program become problematic.
The companies will co-promote each other’s capabilities as part of the collaboration.
Copay programs are continuing to grow in importance as part of overall pharma marketing programs, despite the resistance from pharmacy benefit managers (PBMs) and payers. As the cost of new products grows, PBMs are slow to put them on formularies, or put them at high co-pay tiers. With co-pay assistance, patients are able to try such products without the higher co-pay being a factor in the decision. Physicians aren't the only source of this support; some of it is offered direclty to patients by pharma marketing campaigns, and it is also part of the more comprehensive patient-assistance programs offered in some therapeutic areas.