Every year new, complex therapies are introduced to address diseases typically treated by physician specialties that may not be accustomed to in-office procedures, or to patients that have already been receiving more-traditional therapies to treat their disease. Naturally, manufacturers of these new therapies will likely need to provide an additional level of support for physicians as they become accustomed to new procedures and reimbursement mechanisms, and to patients and caregivers as they look to allay concerns related to new methods of administration and finances. However, not all of these new therapies are priced to support the type of patient services hub that manufacturers have relied on to handle many of these responsibilities.
While contact centers have traditionally filled a vital role for manufacturers as a conduit for receiving and providing medical information and addressing basic customer questions, there may be an opportunity for the next generation contact center to provide an elevated level of service through a more robust, integrated IT infrastructure capable of leveraging data collected from the distribution channel and through other means.
I’ll be attending CBI’s 16th Annual Bio/Pharma Contact Centers Conference in Philadelphia on January 30th and 31st. Topics on the agenda include the use of technology to achieve the next generation contact center and how to deliver better service by understanding the customer journey. I look forward to learning what the presenters and attendees believe the future looks like for contact centers, particularly around supporting lower-priced specialty products that don’t have a robust support hub. I’ll report back what I find.