At EphMRA 2020 Switzerland we shared how patients experience “care at a distance” during COVID-19 so far, and how this impacts your pharma strategies.

Digitization has been a key trend in the healthcare industry for the last few years. The trend is impacting the industry as a whole: from how patients are treated, to how pharmaceutical companies can reach key targets, and to the role patients play in their own care path.

COVID-19 has served as an accelerator to rethink strategy in a more digital world. The diminished access to healthcare professionals and the sudden distant care as patient-HCP interactions are actively avoided have put the development of more digital and distant care in a pressure cooker. SKIM set out to understand how patients experienced a health care system where care is received at a distance, and how these experiences shape the future of the pharma digital strategies.

To understand how patients are adjusting to this sudden change in patient-HCP interactions, we have conducted an online survey in the EU5, Netherlands, and US in June 2020. We surveyed patients who had seen a shift in their care from mainly face-to-face care (physical contact with HCPs) to care at a distance (interactions through telephone, video calls, emails, apps, or other methods). Besides identifying the magnitude of the shift, we also investigated how patients had experienced this shift.

To what extent had it impacted their quality of care? What benefits did it bring them? And are they willing to continue interacting with their physician this way?

In our session we discussed the different dynamics from virtual consultation rooms and share tips how to be successful with distant care in the long run.


Janneke van den Bent,
Research Manager
Kyrsten Corbijn,