More and more I am finding that patients who face with a dizzying amount of treatment options when it comes to fighting cancer that they are often forced to look at other websites because patient friendly cancer drug websites don’t exist. If makers of cancer drugs think that patients don’t want to know about their cancer treatments and have a lot of questions they are fooling themselves and they are ignoring the very patients they want to serve.
Make no mistake about it cancer treatment therapy is difficult and with over 400 cancer drugs in development it’s going to get harder for patients to understand exactly what’s going in their bodies to fight this horrible disease.
In my most recent eMarketer report “The Demographics of Online Health Seekers” the data clearly showed that patients trust their doctor to recommend what is best for them. However they also want to know about treatment options and understand treatments a lot better thus they turn to the internet. So why are cancer drug companies ignoring them ? Here are some things that I believe they could do to make it easier for patients to understand their therapies..
(1) Include a starter kit to be given to patients when they start therapy – The kit would include an interactive DVD and clearly explain the therapy and its side effects. Pharma companies could even work with other OTC CPG companies to include coupons for supplements that their bodies may need as a result of therapy.
(2) Include a ask the ‘expert” on your product website. Allow patients to ask questions to one of your thought leaders and make him, her, available for a Q&A session on popular health sites like WebMD.
(3) Help Oncologists by providing them materials they can give patients to read while they get infusions of cancer drugs.
(4) Recommend other drugs to help them manage any side effects even if your company doesn’t make it. If your product makes patients nauseous then recommend a that they ask their physician for anti-nauseu medications. Your goal is to help patients not just see them as “prospects”.
(5) Deploy a CRM program on your website with “tell me your story”. Patients want to hear from patients like them so make it easy to them to post their stories so others can see the light through the clouds.
More and more patients are taking an active role in their healthcare and it’s no different when it comes to cancer therapy but are pharma companies listening ?