RESEARCH TRIANGLE PARK, NC--(Marketwired - September 30, 2015) - The strained healthcare system and an increasingly crowded marketplace make comparative effectiveness research (CER) more important than ever for the life sciences industry. According to research from pharmaceutical intelligence firm Cutting Edge Information, 100% of surveyed global teams prefer for medical science liaisons (MSLs) to communicate CER data to payers.

MSLs are followed by health outcomes liaisons (HOLS, 60%), who have a similar specialized skillset that allows them to deliver cohesive comparative effectiveness messages within the larger health economics value story. At the country-level, however, comparative effectiveness communication is usually left to managed market accounts managers (75%). This preference can be attributed to limited resources in many country-level units. Account managers are also typically the ones most familiar with the payers and are thus easiest to call upon to deliver a value proposition regarding a product.

According to Comparative Effectiveness Research: Value Stories that Engage Patients, Physicians and Payers, the global groups surveyed here are able to support their companies' operations in individual countries by providing MSLs and HOLs in a highly specialized capacity that may not be viable at the country-level for smaller groups. "This finding reflects many surveyed groups' best practices, wherein MSLs and HOLs -- because of their dual financial and clinical background -- are considered more effective communicators of complex comparative effectiveness data than managed markets account managers," said Jacob Presson, report author and senior research analyst at Cutting Edge Information.

This raises the question of how country-level groups should adapt the message in such a way that account managers without a specialized background can still deliver a compelling value story to payers. One interviewed health economics and outcomes research (HEOR) director has invested in a marketing-type presentation vendor that assisted in stripping down the message to core points in such a way that account managers felt comfortable presenting it while the payers were able to fully understand the key points in the message.

Comparative Effectiveness Research: Value Stories that Engage Patients, Physicians and Payers, available at, provides metrics on the cost and duration of comparative effectiveness studies, as well as how to best deliver this data to external stakeholders. The report examines the changing priorities with regards to conducting comparative effectiveness research in the US. Report highlights include:

  • Benchmarking data showing total comparative effectiveness spending and CER spending per product from 2013 to 2015
  • Top executives' strategic recommendations for delivering CER data to payers -- and using health outcomes liaisons to supplement managed markets account managers' efforts
  • Data showing the amount of time spent discussing CER with payers

For more information about Comparative Effectiveness Research: Value Stories that Engage Patients, Physicians and Payers and other health economics related topics, please download the report summary at

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Rachel Shockley
Marketing Team Lead