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Health Economics and Outcomes Research – What's the Value?

In order to gain market access and remain competitive, pharmaceutical and medical technology manufacturers must be able to demonstrate clinical and economic evidence to providers, healthcare decision-makers and payers. Now more than ever, pricing pressure and regulatory restrictions are generating increased demand for this kind of outcomes evidence.

Kevin Mayo, Senior Director of Health Outcomes & Pharmacoeconomics at Endo Pharmaceuticals, states that stakeholders are increasingly relying on Health Economics and Outcomes Research (HEOR) information to fully understand product value in healthcare and its potential in real-world clinical practice.

In an increasingly complicated legislative environment, the methods used to gain market access are having to change. Payers, physicians and patients each have their own particular interest in a product. As a scientific discipline that quantifies the economic and clinical outcomes of medical technology, HEOR helps manufacturers of pharmaceuticals and devices communicate the value of their innovations to stakeholders.

It is becoming a central component for demonstrating product value, encompassing aspects such as clinical efficacy, real-world data, patient quality of life reports, opportunity cost of various treatment mixes, budget impact, and cost-effectiveness models. All of which eventually supports the allocation of resources for the listing, pricing and reimbursement of new products.

HEOR, once considered a mere support function, is now playing a central part in the internal decision-making process. Pharmaceutical and medical device companies have brought HEOR professionals and brand strategists together in order to build streamlined value chains. HEOR can now provide useful information for licensing and R&D, as well as pricing and market access strategies, and will help to dictate research, planning and sales strategies.

Going forward, it will be essential for HEOR teams to start to efficiently measure their own impact. Currently less than 10% of US companies measure the return on investment of their HEOR efforts. In order to argue the significance of HEOR evaluation systems, a value development plan should be integrated into any HEOR strategy planned to be used as a core business function. The Value Development Plan (VDP) uses evidence-based recommendations to demonstrate and communicate value:

  • 1 - Value Determination

Benchmarks available alternatives in a therapy area based on clinical/economic value.

  • 2 - Value Demonstration

Identifies tactical outcomes research and economic model projects to demonstrate the clinical and economic elements, respectively, of the target value proposition.

  • 3 - Value Communication

Helps to inform and define the value communication strategy and tactics for relevant audiences.

  • 4 - Value Realization

Defines price ranges for products based on demonstrated value and addresses reimbursement and seamless market access.

With the shift towards an outcomes perspective, new technologies are being developed to enable the communication of this often complex information in the form of field tools for commercial teams.

It is in connection with this element of the VDP that the BaseCase platform helps market access managers to evidence return on investment. The platform enables HEOR teams to create spreadsheet- driven, cloud-based apps which dynamically visualize models to communicate the value of new products to the various stakeholders.

With features such as interactive slide decks, dashboards, value dossiers and embeddable calculators, these apps are especially useful during the sales process where health outcomes liaisons must communicate quickly and smartly the benefits of a new product.