PM Educational Opportunity: Enabling Physician-Patient Communication | Diaceutics

PM Educational Opportunity: Enabling Physician-Patient Communication


This case study describes the importance of informed communication. Physicians are the main source of information and advice for patients, however, many physicians are concerned about their ability to communicate test results and answer their patients' questions on molecular diagnostics. It will help you understand:
  • That many web-based sources of information ultimately leave the physician to provide definitive guidance on molecular diagnostics and targeted therapies
  • That consequently, more patients ask their physician for information and advice on molecular tests and targeted therapies
  • That many physicians do not feel entirely confident that they have the knowledge and information to provide such advice, for clinical and non-clinical reasons
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1: Case Summary

This case will help you understand:

That many web-based sources of information ultimately leave the physicians to provide definitive guidance on molecular diagnostics and targeted therapies.

That, consequently, more patients ask their physicians for information and advice on molecular tests and targeted therapies.

That many physicians do not feel entirely confident they have the knowledge and information to provide such advice, for clinical and non-clinical reasons.

Key messages:

The number of patient-initiated conversations about genomic-based medicine is increasing.

While oncologists are confident in their ability to have such conversations, most cardiologists and PCPs still face some obstacles.

The main barriers for physicians are their concerns about being able to converse clearly on the topic, and their level of understanding about insurance and privacy issues.

Key actions:

Educate and communicate effectively with your physicians about testing.

Consider ways to empower your patients around testing.

2: "If You Have Any Questions… Talk to your Doctor"

So What?

Patients are encouraged to talk to their doctors about drugs, including those that require genetic testing. This is stressed on drug labels and many commercial advertisements.

On its website, Pfizer has included a downloadable guide to help NSCLC patients start a conversation with their doctors about genetic testing. 

3: Patient-Initiated Conversations on Molecular Diagnostics are Increasing

Over the last 12 months, what per cent of your patients have initiated a discussion about genomics-based medicine (including molecular diagnostics and targeted therapies)?

 

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So What?

Only 2.7 per cent of patients have initiated a discussion about personalized medicine, while about 8 per cent of patients are initiating a conversation in the oncologist's office.

However, this pattern is expected to increase as the use of genomic-based medicine rises and patients become more informed through websites and commercial campaigns.

4: Many Physicians are Not Confident to Talk Knowledgeably about Genomics

To what extent* do you agree with the following statements? 

*5 Point Scale (1=Completely disagree, 5=Completely agree)

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So What?

While most oncologists feel confident they can talk with patients about genomics in a language patients can understand, just under half of all PCPs feel the same way.

5: Barriers and Catalysts to Adoption of Genomic Solutions

To what extent* do you agree with the following statements: "When it comes to molecular diagnostic tests, I am confident I can… "? 

*5 Point Scale (1=Completely disagree, 5=Completely agree)

 

Agreement With Molecular Diagnostic Testing Statements (% Scores of 4 and 5)

I AM CONFIDENT I CAN...TOTAL
(n=800)
PCP
(n=300)
CARDIOLOGIST
(n=250)
ONCOLOGIST
(n=250)
Explain test results to my patients49%46%61%84%
Identify appropriate patients for testing48%45%57%85%
Understand and interpret the test results45%42%52%83%
Choose the right test39%35%50%83%
Choose which lab to send the tests to32%30%35%56%
Determine if the test is covered by insurance25%24%30%39%
Determine the right insurance codes23%23%25%34%

 

 

So What?

Fewer than half of PCPs describe themselves as being confident in their ability to explain, identify and interpret test results. They are even less confident they can choose the right test or lab, or understand the insurance issues associated with tests.

Cardiologists are only just better in being able to identify the right test.

6: Physicians' Concerns Over Patient Privacy are a Key Barrier to Molecular Test Adoption

Compared to other laboratory tests you use, are you more or less concerned about the privacy of a patient’s information when using a molecular diagnostic test?

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So What?

Physicians express heightened concern about patient privacy when it comes to molecular diagnostic testing compared to other types of testing.

7: Key Messages

Key messages:

The number of patient-initiated conversations about genomic-based medicine is increasing.

While oncologists are confident in their ability to have such conversations, most cardiologists and PCPs still face some obstacles.

The main barriers for physicians are their concerns about being able to converse clearly on the topic, and their level of understanding about insurance and privacy issues.

Key actions:

Educate and communicate effectively with your physicians about testing.

Consider ways to empower your patients around testing.

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