By Evelyne Priestman, Senior Health Economist at Health Tech Enterprise
From User-Centric to Multi-Dimensional Value Propositions
Most innovations we encounter at Health Tech Enterprise (HTE) have been developed by clinicians or other healthcare professionals who have identified unmet needs in the care pathways.
Adopting this approach when designing and developing products is an excellent starting point as the innovation stems from the very real experiences of the main users.
However, an unmet need and clever technological solutions are not enough to get products adopted. In healthcare markets, the person using the innovation is not always the person paying for the innovation. A complete value proposition in healthcare markets needs to be multi-dimensional and consider the healthcare professional using the innovation, the funder paying for it, as well as the patient on whom the innovation is used.
Profiling the Stakeholders in Healthcare Markets
When developing the value proposition, we take a systematic approach to capture and profile all the stakeholders involved in healthcare markets[i]. Healthcare professionals are considered to be those who choose and deliver the healthcare intervention, for example, the doctors, nurses, assistants, and carers. Payors are budget holders who purchase the healthcare intervention, such as care commissioners, hospital budget holders, the NHS, and insurance providers. Patients include the specific patients who are the beneficiaries of the healthcare intervention.
While healthcare professionals are most concerned with improving specific patient health outcomes, payors are focused on delivering a suite of required healthcare interventions within the scarce budgets they have at their disposal.
Creating a Multi-Dimensional Value Proposition
Each of these stakeholders is an individual with different needs, motivations, jobs to be done, pain points and success criteria[ii]. A successful value proposition needs to communicate the benefits to be provided by your innovation differently, depending on whom you need to convince.
A high-level evaluation done by HTE shows a typical value proposition for a MedTech innovation in the UK healthcare market today (see Figure 1).
Figure 1 – Example Value Proposition for a generic MedTech Innovation
Defining the value proposition of your innovation early in the product development pathway is crucial to ensure that the values you want to communicate become hard-wired into the product design itself, inform product positioning and shape your evidence-generation strategy.
Demonstrating the Value Claims Made
Innovators are used to operating in conditions of uncertainty; from proof-of-concept to prototype to first studies, each step is designed to test the hypotheses and assumptions made early in the product development process and refine the product through iterative design and development. The same approach should be applied to demonstrating the value claims made.
If the innovation purports to create value for physicians by reducing the number of appointments per patient, this needs to be backed up with solid evidence as decision-makers will scrutinise the claims made, and require hard evidence to be convinced.
A robust evidence-generation strategy is needed alongside the value proposition to ensure that claim-supporting data is generated. While this data may not always be available at the early stages of product development, decision-makers want to see plans on how the innovator plans to generate the evidence needed to validate the claims made with real-world evidence.
Health Economic Modelling for Evidence Generation
While it is paramount that your innovation can prove safety and efficacy, successful market access requires that it can also show health economic benefits.
A clear value proposition can help innovators define quantifiable and measurable health economic benefits to be validated. While study data is desirable and can strengthen the evidence base, it may not always be necessary. A thorough, systematic literature review can reveal useful prior evidence which can be used for health economic modelling in a UK setting.
An early health economic model can pave the way to fruitful discussions with budget holders at the regional and national level, as well as open the possibility for managed access programmes or the use of the innovation in pilot sites to collect further data.
Having a strategic roadmap to effectively gather the evidence needed to prove your innovation’s value is key to convincing decision-makers at every step of your developmental pathway. Combining differing sources of data can reveal evidence gaps which can enable future studies to focus on collecting the data parameters required to strengthen the value proposition. Existing clinical, epidemiological and health-economic evidence can be used, alongside specific study evidence, to prove the value of claims made. Furthermore, scenario analysis using the health economic model can reveal which benefits can provide maximal value to the stakeholders involved (see example in Figure 2 ).
Figure 2 – Example of Tornado chart of benefits modelled
Our team at HTE has extensive experience in modelling the health-economic benefits of early-stage technologies and supporting our clients in their journey by providing them with fully interactive, live decision analytical tools which can be refined with real-world study data as they proceed in their developmental pathway.
The commercial success of a medical technology relies on a clear, multi-dimensional value proposition being communicated successfully and consistently to all the relevant stakeholders. Furthermore, defining your value proposition early on will enable clearer product positioning, and pricing; both of which are foundational to underpinning your business model.
Our team of specialist consultants, statisticians and health economists can be an effective partner in helping your innovation achieve market success.
[i] Osterwalder, A., Pigneur, Y., Bernarda, G., Smith, A. (2014) Value Proposition Design: How to Create Products and Services Customers Want, John Wiley & Sons.
[ii] Wunker, Wattman. 2018. Jobs to Be Done: A Roadmap for Customer-Centered Innovation. AMACOM.