Healthcare organizations can often benefit substantially from having a better understanding of current treatment pathways as well as the cost of treatment for a specific disease, plus what other services patients use. This is particularly the case with specific types or subtypes of cancer, or for chronic conditions such as a cardiovascular disease or an autoimmune disease. Understanding more precisely what treatments and other services patients currently receive and for how long – and what effect these treatments have – can help identify the unmet needs of patients. Additionally, it can indicate how current treatments can be targeted better, or how new treatments may improve the current situation. This increased understanding is especially important if patients require emergency care or need to be hospitalized.
NHG has solved this challenge for multiple clients in the pharma sector by utilizing real-world evidence derived from electronic hospital medical records. Algorithms designed together with clinicians were used to derive variables from structured and non-structured data describing relevant phenomena such as different treatment combinations and treatment lines, time on treatment, treatment effects, treatment costs, and resource use.
NHG’s role has been to take care of all tasks related to conducting the studies, including research protocols, permit applications, data requests, data processing, and validation, as well as the analysis and reporting of the result. NHG has also supported our clients in the management of the project and the scheduling of regular meetings with the client’s representatives as well as with clinical key opinion leaders (KOLs), who are engaged in the project to give a clinical perspective to the research questions and to interpret the results.
Clients gained insights into the current state and needs of the patient group in question. In some cases, the insights were unexpected, for example, they were related to improvement of the diagnostic procedure rather than the actual treatment. Our clients were also able to build relationships and have regular communication with the KOLs and gain a better understanding of the KOLs’ needs. As a result, our clients not only received the information needed for their market access activities for new products, but also developed new ideas on how to improve patient care in other ways as well. For example, through improving early diagnostics or follow-up practices, and motivating patients to improve adherence.