New preventative treatments for chronic kidney disease are emerging, but multiple barriers to treatment remain.
Nephrologists manage patients with a wide range of conditions, including polycystic kidney disease, acute renal failure, kidney stones, and high blood pressure, as well as patients with chronic and end-stage renal disease. Dialysis for patients with end-stage renal disease remains a mainstay of nephrology. However, since large patient populations are managed with dialysis at high cost, dialysis has come under pressure from payers and policymakers. Reimbursement for dialysis units, especially in rural settings, is decreasing, leading to a declining quality of care, since payers have recognized dialysis only defers the mortality associated with end-stage renal disease without reducing it.
While possibilities for the early preventive and disease altering treatment for chronic kidney disease are emerging, patients cannot yet take full advantage of them. The main barriers to treatment are reimbursement-related, late referral of patients from primary to specialty care and lack of patient awareness of chronic kidney disease. The challenges that are still associated with kidney transplantation, namely increasing waiting lists due to organ shortage, as well as death from infection due to immunosuppression, make overcoming the barriers to treatment for chronic kidney disease a priority. Moreover, kidney disease may start in childhood, which forces parents to take on large responsibilities for the care of their child. The increased survival of these pediatric patients will lead to an increasing number of adults with chronic kidney disease.
With the help of PDI, your nephrology customers can realize the full potential of early treatment.
Successful pharmaceutical sales strategies for nephrology hinge on provider and patient education. PDI’s medical science liaisons (MSLs) engage in scientific dialogue aimed at detecting early indications of chronic kidney disease and discussing new treatment paradigms as well as protocols for decision-making and referral. Our clinical health educators (CHEs) deliver patient and family education on managing pediatric chronic kidney disease, adhering to treatment protocol, and ensuring that proper diet, nutrition, and exercise goals are followed. PDI’s field-based medical sales representatives can provide basic provider education, as well as work with payers on reimbursement issues. Our inside medical sales representatives give you access to nephrologists that are not receptive to in-person visits, and provide the same services as our field-based representatives via our dedicated healthcare contact center.
Advocacy and education efforts are needed to secure patient access to the best possible nephrological care:
- Advocacy for reimbursement of treatments for chronic kidney disease. The treatment for chronic kidney disease is multidisciplinary and involves nutritionists, exercise physiologists, dieticians, and social workers. Treating chronic kidney disease avoids costly interventions later
- Education of primary care providers on recognizing early stage chronic kidney disease to enable timely referral of patients to specialty care
- Patient education to increase awareness of chronic kidney disease and to promote potentially life-saving lifestyle changes such as a healthier diet, weight reduction, and increased physical activity
- Education on the management of pediatric kidney disease for patients and their families
- Education on emerging treatments and practices improving the outcomes of immunosuppression