At this year’s American College of Cardiology (ACC) Annual Meeting, medical professionals from all over the world gathered to unite in the continuous fight for heart health. While I was unfortunately unable to attend, we did get to speak with several of our panel physicians who experienced the congress first hand. This year we had a unique opportunity to interview some of the attending physicians to hear their unbiased thoughts and opinions following the conclusion of the conference. These results helped us shape our expectations for the world of Cardiology in years to come.
While the ACC covered a multitude of therapies during the meeting last month, they primarily focused discussions on both the evolution of CHD (Congenital Heart Disease) in both children and adults, and patient outcome improvement. During these talks, physicians shared that they were generally satisfied with the new treatment options on the market. Looking ahead, the future of cardiology shows a strong emphasis on treatment value, expectations, and advocacy. HCP’s have urged patients and physicians to keep an open dialogue, particularly within exercise related discussions post CHD events.The spectrum of opinions vary greatly across our polled questions, however many of the physician’s treatment expectations are aligned with study outcomes.
After the event, we successfully polled several doctors to gauge their candid response and feedback from the conference. Being able to gauge reactions close to when the information was shared allows us to see natural thoughts and feelings on the subject, versus later impressions which could have been influenced by outside factors.
To this, the general feedback on PCSK9 inhibitors was optimistic; yet, the results lack elements to entice any further excitement in their answers. While the responses varied, the impression following the conference was favorable, particularly when applicable to their private practices.
One interesting aspect of polling MD’s after the event was to hear the potential impacts that the conference “breakthroughs” have on their practice. With the PCSK9 treatments on the market, the general go to option was chosen based on a large backing of superior outcome data. Not only do these physicians consider outcomes, but they also consider the general cost to the client. Physician resistance to specific treatments circled around obstacles they face in insurance approval, with large co-pays being another barrier to treatment access. Coverage is a prominent theme when it comes to sufficiently caring for patients , with some discussion of treatments having limited access due to insurance carriers. All in all however, the potential practice impact that the news gathered at 2017 ACC congress is substantial. As for some, the application of data is only relevant if they are able to successfully prescribe better drugs to their patients.
While we have come a long way with cardiovascular health development, there are still outside factors that have a impact on being able to deliver the highest level of care. The multitude of breakthroughs from ACC vary in importance and relevance; with some brands making strides to improve outcomes and others faltering over time. Price and availability will always have an impact on treatment options, but hearing the physicians themselves deter patients from an option due to financial barriers becomes emotional. No matter what medical breakthroughs occur, this information is only applicable if they are accessible to the people who need their treatment. And that is one theme that all physicians, caregivers, family members, and HCP’s can get behind.
Mark Andrews is a Marketing Manager for Verilogue. Mark works with pharmaceutical companies to develop, grow, and improve patient centricity for their patients. By leveraging digital strategies to improve individual experiences, Mark helps brands improve their engagement efforts, while maximizing their brand’s full potential.
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