Can Digital MR be the Enabler of Patient Centricity?

Posted by Borderless Access on Dec 13, 2019 1:17:41 PM
Borderless Access

Patient centricity is no longer just a buzzword. From patient-centric virtual clinical trial programs by Novartis to patient-focussed tech products and services, the approach to healthcare is changing. While the world is leaning towards patient centricity, we are still far from achieving a truly patient-centric healthcare system that’s unhindered.

So, what role can market research play to make a positive contribution towards a patient-centric future and bring agility to pharma companies?

Slide1Source: PPES 2019 Pre (Physician/Patient Experience Study) Borderless Access, n=1,600 patients and n=100 General Physician
Q: On a scale of 1 to 7, how would you rate the overall ease and clarity of communication with your  _______(Primary Physician/ Patients)

A recent survey (above) of patients and doctors across Indonesia and the United Kingdom by Borderless Access affirmed some of these challenges, which are already considered to be sticking points by stakeholders in the healthcare sector.

The survey outcome establishes the existence of a doctor-patient disconnect. At the same time, it sheds light on the opportunities for market researchers to bridge the communication gap as well as improve information gathering, for the benefit of patients as well as pharma, biotech, and other related industries.

This thought lead Borderless Access to further the study to map patient journeys by employing new-age research methods on our deeply profiled healthcare respondents.

Case Study:

The goal of the study was to conduct two parallel patient journey studies. In the control group, patient data was gathered using conventional means while in the test group, this data was supplemented with additional data from a “smart device” worn by the patients. The smart device was used to capture a wealth of information such as blood volume pressure, heart rate, skin temperature and muscle tone, GPS data, general activity levels and more.


Both studies were carried out from the first awareness of the problem to treatment and the following observations were made.

Control group: In this case, patient inputs to the doctor were minimum, limited by doctor-patient disconnect as observed earlier. The treatment process was dependent on data monitored by doctors based on conventional treatment practices such as medical tests, as well as patient inputs and available historical data.

Also, doctor recommendations dependent on adherence to therapy and physical activity were dictated by available historical data and patient inputs.

The result was a conventional consultation where the treatment was significantly influenced by patient inputs alone.

Test group: In the second case, the doctors had access to a rich set of data gathered from continuous monitoring of patients' health and other parameters through the smart device. Significantly, this information helped fill the gaps in the information provided verbally by the patients. Information was further validated using passive data monitoring for precision diagnostics and the course of treatment, and medication was decided based on the comprehensive analysis of active and passive information.

In the test group, doctor recommendations were not limited to patient inputs only since the smart devices allowed active tracking of patient activity, routine, and even certain aspects of therapy adherence. This made the recommendations more dynamic and suited to individual patient requirements.

Slide3Source: PPES 2019 Post (Physician/Patient Experience Study) Borderless Access, n=250 patients and n=43 General Physician
Q: On a scale of 1 to 7, how would you rate the overall ease and clarity of communication with your  _______(Primary Physician/ Patients)

Upon completion of the study, a survey was once again conducted, which revealed that the doctor-patient communication gap in the test group had reduced in both countries by a considerable margin.


A digital, data-driven approach to healthcare market research has the potential to change the face of healthcare to be more patient centric. A forward-looking approach to patient-centric healthcare research involves a combination of methods. The existing quality and quantity of patient information collected via smart devices will methodically change future feedback. Tracking studies as a hybrid of technical and traditional surveys will become the new standard. Passive data technologies are increasingly being used and the collected data will in the future be validated and analysed in new depth by digital market research companies such as Borderless Access.

Topics: market research, healthcare market research, healthcare MR, patient centricity, patient centric healthcare, patient centricity healthcare

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