Improving patient health outcomes with Real-World Insights 

By Roshel Jayasundera, Managing Partner, Axios International

30th May 2023

Understanding a patient’s journey – prior to diagnosis all the way till after treatment – is pivotal to maximizing the potential of novel therapies and patient support services. In today’s world, the healthcare industry is leveraging real-world data to improve medical outcomes and discern this journey. Over the last decade, there has been significant growth in the availability of real-world data sources. However, more accurate data is needed to understand how specific access or patient support interventions affect patients’ health outcomes. Such data is vital for several reasons. It can help doctors make better decisions about a patient’s treatment, help healthcare providers optimize access to their medications and treatments, and help governments or other payers decide how to support the cost of treatment and determine the overall impact. The gathered data interests all stakeholders, and its insights help develop a sustainable healthcare ecosystem centered around patients. 

With 25 years of global experience and local expertise in implementing Patient Assistant Programs (PAPs) and Patient Support Programs (PSPs) to over 9.5 million patients in over 100 countries, Axios International is uniquely positioned to offer specialized solutions to address these challenges through Real World Insights. RWI is significant in identifying critical factors impacting patients’ health outcomes and ensuring that these insights are used to improve healthcare deliveries to support needy patients across emerging markets.   

Bridging the healthcare access gap through Real-World Insights   

RWI is the result of the core activities Axios International undertakes. It has been designed to draw learnings from the healthcare access initiatives implemented in over 100 countries and help Axios improve its existing programs to create better patient benefits and contribute towards better access. Through its daily work, Axios has access to insights and understanding of how a patient’s journey should differ from Malaysia to the United Arab Emirates (UAE) to Mexico. This information is analyzed systematically to understand how Axios can improve how it supports patients and, most importantly, contribute to broader access.   

The ability to comprehend these realities stems from the privilege of working closely with patients, their healthcare providers, and other stakeholders in their treatment journey, having developed a clear understanding that >70% of a patient’s journey happens once they leave the clinical settings. This experience allows us to gather insights that are safe and compliant with all privacy standards, such as the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) and any local privacy data laws applicable in the countries where Axios programs have been implemented, ensuring a compliant approach. Using the same process, Axios also ensures patients’ boundaries are considered. The focus is on providing data security while expanding patient access and using these insights only to support broader access. With RWI, we can systematically analyze, learn, and improve from our thousands of patient support and assistance programs and help demonstrate the value of the access initiatives.   

Ultimately, Axios International RWI’s scientific and patient-centric approach is to learn and identify potential affordability, care, and treatment accessibility barriers in the patient journey and improve the level of support provided through Axios access initiatives. These barriers can be overcome by understanding how to reach optimal treatment plans that suit the needs of the patients in the space outside the hospital or healthcare facility, increasing the rate of adherence to treatment, and ultimately, reducing the disease burden and strengthening the local healthcare landscape. It also helps shape how healthcare is delivered to patients wherever they are in a pragmatic patient-centric approach. In essence, RWI helps map out the entire patient journey unique to each patient, identify potential barriers, and improve the level of support through access initiatives across emerging markets.   

Space outside the hospital  

Working with patients since Axios launched the first anti-retroviral and cancer programs 25 years ago, one unique factor seen in every country is that most of the patients’ journey happens in space outside the hospital or healthcare facility. A patient sees the doctor and spends five or twenty minutes with a physician, depending on where they are in the world, and then goes home. That disease burden, for instance, having multiple treatments throughout the day, remains with the patient, the family, and the caregiver. RWI helps us understand what happens in that space outside the hospital and how to create a more connected healthcare system between the stakeholders to help improve treatment outcomes.  

Axios RWI outcomes from a recent study demonstrate a difference in the impact and duration of treatment of a patient and is an apt example of how the company contributes to shaping broader access. The study shows how the type of intervention done during follow-up may influence the patient’s ability to continue to take treatment; Axios RWI helped us learn that patients who received a phone call with a personalized touch ended up staying on treatment longer compared to digital-only follow-ups via apps or email. In this case, the impact of using digital as an enabler was demonstrated rather than as a tool to replace that human touch.   

Real-world, access-focused insights can aid in identifying the unmet needs of patient populations, improving the overall patient experience. In addition, access-focused data can help facilitate solutions by supporting evidence-based decision-making by all stakeholders involved in the treatment journey – from the patient who experiences the symptom to the doctor that first diagnoses and prescribes treatment to the patient, to the company that manufactures the therapy, to the government that decides how to make the treatment available to that population and develops best-in-class guidelines and policies.   

Enhancing the patient journey, Axios RWI further helps deliver breakthrough insights on the disease evolution, treatment, patients’ perceptions, outcomes, and costs. By creating 360-degree value through data from all stakeholders, RWI supports patients in achieving better health outcomes.