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Breaking silos to create patient value

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    What clinicians value is not always the same as what patients value. It’s time for a shared vision of value in healthcare.


    In healthcare today, everyone is committed to creating patient value. At conferences and meetings, including this week’s World Economic Forum, there is no shortage of enthusiasm for value-based healthcare.

    However, UCB’s message to leading thinkers in Davos is that we need to dig deeper to define value, if we are to measure it and maximise it.

    The challenge we face is that value means different things to different people. We are all operating in silos. It is tempting to think that everyone understands patient value in the same way. Tempting, but mistaken.

    Proof, if proof were needed, can be seen in a recent University of Utah survey in which patients and physicians were asked to select the five most important value characteristics in healthcare. A stunning 90% of patients chose different combinations from any combination selected by physicians. We are using the same word but speaking a different language.

    Aligned definitions of value
    To break out of our silos, we need to work together. We need to align our definitions of value and reward stakeholders accordingly for the value that is created.

    If we can achieve this, the next step will be to measure patient value. This will mean collecting and analysing the right data. Without common definitions, agreed metrics, and a pathway for incentivising and rewarding those who deliver value, we cannot hope to reach our shared goals.
     
    Patient feedback can help to move this process forward. The clinical outcomes that physicians tend to prioritise, and the affordability measures that interest payers, are no substitute for outcomes that matter to patients.

    Patients take a broader view of value. They want their lives to be as normal as possible. They are keenly aware of their clinical symptoms, but also aware of their overall experience: how well they sleep, how they feel, are they able to spend quality time with their loved ones...

    People with chronic diseases do not want to be defined by their condition and are not always impressed by subtle changes in objective clinical tests. They want to work and to enjoy themselves; they want a family life, a social life, a love life – like everybody else.

    The patient lens
    At UCB we ask ourselves every day ‘How will the work I’m doing create value for patients living with severe diseases?’ We are committed to listen to the real needs and wants of our patients , break the silos and work with  other stakeholders to align on a definition and  measurement of what value means  for patients.

    Of course, this cannot be done overnight – we are on a journey together, but we must start with the essential step of breaking down silos.

    Only by committing to a shared definition of value, and listening to what patients want, can we move to a future where we view value-based healthcare through the lens of the patient.

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