- 1 in 2 American adults use general health-focused Web sites
- 43% research specific conditions on ailment-focused sites
- 5% go to online communities
- 3% go to pharmaceutical companies’ branded drug sites.
Prospectiv conducted this survey into Internet health habits in October 2008. By that time, consumers were getting real about the economic downturn. Prospectiv found that economic concerns were directly impacting health behaviors:
- 87% of people were concerned about escalating costs of prescription drugs
- 82% would welcome receiving prescription drug vouchers and free sample offers directly from pharmaceutical companies
- 65% of consumers prefer enewsletters for receiving prescription vouchers and samples.
Health consumers’ personal credit crises will drive them to seek assistance wherever they can get it — from credible sources. This is a moment of opportunity for pharma companies to rebuild trust with the public. The Prospectiv data show that 49% of people didn’t know about branded pharma sites, and 38% lacked trust in the company-run sites.
The industry can use this time to close the trust gap and provide authentic assistance and guidance to people who are chronically ill and seeking help in all forms — financial, informational, product, access.