May 30th, 2024

3 in 4 surveyed patients show strong interest in replacing medications with both approved and experimental treatments.

Over 131 million people in the US — roughly 66% of Americans — take prescription drugs regularly. That’s more than the number of people who watched the Super Bowl this year. And yet, 1 in 3 surveyed patients who take prescription medications said that they were unsatisfied with at least one of their current drugs.

With so many people regularly using prescription medications, and such a large proportion unhappy with their current drugs, we wanted to discover the reasons why patients are unsatisfied and if they’d be interested in alternatives. To do that, we fielded a survey in March 2024 of 332 adults in our marketplace, each taking one or more prescription medications.

Medication effectiveness was the top reason that surveyed patients were unsatisfied with their prescriptions.

While the number of prescriptions varied by patient (with several people reporting 25 or more regular prescriptions), 55% of respondents identified “medication effectiveness” as the primary reason for their dissatisfaction. In a close second, 43% of respondents said side effects were the cause, while 19% of respondents highlighted price as a major factor.

  • Medication Effectiveness
  • Side Effects
  • Price
  • Not covered by insurance
  • Timing or method taking medication

† Respondents were allowed to choose multiple reasons for their dissatisfaction

55% Medication Effectiveness vs 43% Side Effects vs 19% Price vs 8% Not covered by insurance vs 8% Timing or method taking medication

69% of surveyed patients showed interest in participating in a clinical trial for an alternative treatment.

More than two-thirds of respondents said they were “somewhat” or “highly likely” to consider a clinical trial for an alternative to their regular prescription medications. This result is consistent with previous surveys gauging patient interest in clinical trial participation, but things took an interesting turn when we asked patients about their interest in experimental alternatives offered by a clinical trial versus an FDA-approved alternative already on the market.

76% of surveyed patients were likely to replace their regular prescriptions with an FDA-approved alternative treatment.

We expected to see an increase in patient interest when comparing a market-ready FDA-approved treatment, but 7% was a smaller increase than anticipated. Rather than being intimidated by clinical research, respondents were eager to try alternative treatments regardless of whether the treatment was approved or experimental.

69% of respondents were interested in clinical trials for an alternative treatment.

76% of respondents were interested in an FDA-approved alternative treatment.

Patients are interested in alternatives to their prescribed medications — they just don’t know their options.

When 1 in 3 surveyed patients admit they are unsatisfied with their current prescriptions, it’s clear that patients need alternatives. Clinical and brand teams at pharmaceutical, medical device, and bio-tech companies have a unique opportunity to help patients find better treatments that alleviate the pain points caused by their current medication.

Are you looking to connect with patients? Reach out by emailing Sales@SubjectWell.com.