COPD Stakeholder Summit: Utilizing Peak Inspiratory Flow Rates to Individualize Treatment and Improve Outcomes - Episode 18

Improving Patient-Centered Care in COPD

Closing thoughts from a discussion between clinicians and a payer on best practices for identifying and treating patients with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease to optimize outcomes and improve care.

Neil Minkoff, MD: I’m going to start winding this down. I want to thank everybody for being part of this. This has been very interesting. It’s been a rich discussion with lots of good information going back and forth. Some of it is very practical: not just a thirst for knowledge but how to translate some of that into direct patient care, improve clinical skills, and hopefully improve patient engagement and outcomes. Before we conclude, I’m going to open it up for final thoughts and comments. Dr Mahler?

Donald A. Mahler, MD: I’ve enjoyed participating in this panel. Clearly, we need more information for patients, health care professionals, and the people who work for insurance companies to improve outcomes for our patients with COPD [chronic obstructive pulmonary disease]. One of the most challenging things in my practice is prescribing a medication that is not covered by the patient’s insurance coverage. Then we go through, “Let’s try this,” or, “Let’s do prior authorization.” I understand the dilemma that insurance companies have. They have contracts with pharmaceutical companies, and they have preferred and less preferred medications. Things like this panel that help us communicate and understand different perspectives while focusing on patients and their outcomes can only help improve things for all of us. It’s been my pleasure.

Neil Minkoff, MD: Mr Hess?

Michael Hess, MPH, RRT, RPFT: To echo that, we have a lot of work that needs to be done. There’s still a lot to improve on in the COPD world, but opportunities like this, in which we bring multiple stakeholders to the table and start having more open, robust conversation pushes us along the line. That gives me a lot of hope for the future. I’m excited to see a lot of the new tools that are coming available and people excited to use them.

Neil Minkoff, MD: Dr Lopes?

Maria Lopes, MD, MS: Absolutely, well said. I’ve tremendously enjoyed being part of this group. Anything we can do to improve best practices and improve the care delivery for these patients is in all our best interests as we aspire to do a better job in delivering care and reducing cost. There’s a lot of innovation in terms of the patient outreach side. The data we can collect hopefully matters in terms of being actionable. It’s also important to think about patient-centered care because these patients have a lot of needs. It’s important to understand how we can do a better job with care coordination, care management delivery, and the efficiency of the delivery of care so that we’re not duplicating efforts and being grounded on the evidence-based medicine. Thank you.

Neil Minkoff, MD: That gives you the last word, Dr Drummond.

M. Bradley Drummond, MD, MHS: It’s truly been a pleasure. These types of multidisciplinary conversations are what we need to advance COPD care. I think back to where we were with COPD care 20 years ago, and there was this nihilism that there’s nothing we can do. “Here’s an inhaler, which may help you a little. But otherwise, we’re not going to make any dents on your disease progression.” Now we’re talking about individual phenotyping with eosinophils, peak inspiratory flow, virtual telehealth, and virtual rehabilitation. There has been so much evolution in our care for COPD patients, which exciting, engaging, and optimistic. Hopefully with these multidisciplinary groups, we can continue to move and improve the care of our COPD patients. Thanks for involving me.

Neil Minkoff, MD: Again, I’d like to thank all our panelists for being part of this discussion. As I said, it was very robust. To anybody in our viewing audience, we certainly hope you found this Stakeholder Summit from the American Journal of Managed Care® to be useful and informative. Thank you for joining us.

This activity is supported by an educational grant from Boehringer Ingelheim.