There continues to be a great deal of buzz around real-world data (RWD).

For biopharmaceutical companies raised on conventional market research, the ability to now access data pulled directly from insurance claims and electronic health records (EHR) translates to a major upgrade in analytical muscle. At least, that’s the theory.

In practice, RWD projects are extremely challenging. The data is expensive to buy, time-consuming to process, and requires a great deal of analytical and therapeutic expertise to turn into reliable, meaningful, actionable insights. But done right, RWD has the potential to boost brand performance, fine-tune commercial strategy, tease out subtle market nuances, and unlock hidden opportunities.

This is especially true in a crowded marketplace like rheumatoid arthritis (RA), where a near-bewildering array of treatment options, from conventional DMARDs to a slew of big-ticket biologics, are battling for a slice of the pie. While TNF-α inhibitors (including Enbrel and Humira) benefit from being the first biologics to market, more than ten biological and targeted oral brands are currently competing on the similar ground. And still, there are more coming!

Within such a fiercely competitive set, it’s crucial for marketers to understand the underlying characteristics that drive brand use, and have access to the tools they need to identify segments of opportunity, either for building share with emerging brands or expanding share with existing brands. Alas, such detailed, nuanced analyses have proven difficult, nay impossible, to pursue in a market that relies solely on physician insights to paint a picture of the complex clinical landscape.

The good news is that RWD is changing all that.

Patient Profiler, a new product from DRG, evaluates two sources of RWD, claims and EHR, to offer a detailed, brand-level analysis of key patient characteristics across the entire RA population. The use of RWD opens new avenues of insight into the patient experience. Key findings include:

  • Top-level analysis of EHR records of 113,449 patients diagnosed with RA shows that 36% were treated with DMARDs as the most recent RA therapy (conventional or targeted) during the one-year study period.
  • Of non-DMARD therapies, not surprisingly, NSAIDs are the most commonly prescribed drug class for RA patients (40%).Other pain management medications, including opioid combinations and opioid agonists, also rank high on the list of drugs commonly prescribed to RA patients.
  • For therapies covered under medical benefits, a higher level of payer discounting is observed, although the range of reimbursed monthly costs is similar to drug costs in the pharmacy claims analysis.

Use real-world EHR and claims data to uncover opportunities in your key patient segments and unlock key metrics for your brand:

  • Demographic characteristics and clinical profiles
  • Disease-specific and general lab tests and values
  • Key risk factors, comorbidities, and co-prescribed therapies
  • Insurance providers and reimbursement/out-of-pocket costs
  • Care utilization and health outcomes
  • Patient-level brand differentiators

In addition to RA, two further editions will publish in 2017, covering Psoriasis and Psoriatic Arthritis, with further disease coverage planned for 2018.

If you'd like to learn how you can leverage RWD to understand the patient experience, simply fill out the form below!

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