The commentary around the announcement of the Cigna-Express Scripts deal noted that more than 300 different influences impacted a patient’s decision to refill a prescription. Unfinished prescriptions, broken diets and incomplete therapies are one of the healthcare industry’s biggest challenges. There are incentives for the patient, the pharmaceutical companies, the insurers and doctors to solve the problem.
So how can health professionals keep patients on the path to a healthier life? It comes down to predicting behaviors and personalizing the nudges needed to keep patients on track while maintaining the scale needed to address our growing healthcare needs.
How can all the players in the healthcare industry help keep patients on track, while reducing overall costs—for patients, and pharmaceutical companies alike?
Ipsos created a framework to understand how people stick to their prescription regimens. This adherence begins with the steps of the desired behavior: starting, executing and continuing. It then overlays the barriers that thwart people from keeping on course: motivation, ability, physical context and social context.
One solution is to make the desired behavior into a habit, which bypasses the barrier of motivation. Ipsos defines a habit as a cue that prompts a behavior and generates an immediate reward. Since technology is shaping consumer behavior in other industries could it for health as well?
By applying behavioral techniques, healthcare companies can create a future where people stay healthier, providers save the costs of re-treating lapsed patients, and pharma companies have regular, repeat customers. To get there, the industry will need to fully understand patients, their individual barriers and the rewards that matter to them. By working with pharmaceutical companies and health systems, industry leaders can create custom tools to help patients stay on the track to better health.
July 24, 2018