How is treatment of type 2 diabetes realised in Finland – a national survey brings out patients’ voice

Comprehensive care of type 2 diabetes has a great impact on the quality of life and healthcare costs. A recently launched national patient survey maps current practices of diabetes treatment as well as how people with diabetes understand their own treatment. Additionally, the aim is to investigate how treatment is realised among patients with concomitant cardiovascular diseases. The project is carried out in collaboration with pharmaceutical company Boehringer Ingelheim, Oriola, the Finnish Diabetes Association and the Association of Finnish Pharmacies.

According to estimates, there are approximately 500,000 people with diabetes in Finland, and most of them have the type 2 diabetes. The disease causes significant costs to society and healthcare system. The biggest cost impact comes from diabetes-related complications, such as vascular diseases.

These complications can be prevented by maintaining good treatment balance with comprehensive care. Therefore, regular monitoring and diabetic’s commitment to treatment have a key role in maintaining quality of life and decreasing costs. To investigate how type 2 diabetes treatment is realised in Finland, Boehringer Ingelheim and Oriola have launched a national survey, which has been created in cooperation with the Finnish Diabetes Association.

Earlier research and register data have showed that many people with type 2 diabetes are not using medication in accordance with current guidelines. The aim of the survey is to assess the current situation of type 2 diabetes treatment in Finland, and examine how patients understand their own disease and treatment,” says Laura Kasslin, Head of Market Access and Public Affairs, Boehringer Ingelheim.

Patient reported data enriches research of type 2 diabetes treatment

The survey is conducted through Oriola’s research pharmacy network, which currently covers approximately 180 pharmacies across Finland. The survey is targeted at people with type 2 diabetes who have diabetes medication excluding only insulin and are aged 18 years and above. The respondents fill in an electronic survey in the pharmacies.

The research collaboration between Oriola and the pharmacies is internationally unique concept to gather data of patients’ experiences to studies on effectiveness of pharmacotherapy.

With surveys, we can collect valuable information of how treatment functions in patients’ daily life, including patients’ commitment to treatment, how they experience disease burden as well as how pharmacotherapy impacts to healthcare costs and patients’ quality of life,” says Heli Salminen-Mankonen, Head of Data Driven Business and Research at Oriola.

In parallel with the survey, a closer collaboration model between pharmacies and healthcare centres is tested in approximately 20 localities for the benefit of people with type 2 diabetes. Approximately 50 pharmacies that are members of the Association of Finnish Pharmacies take part in the collaboration. The healthcare centres participating to the initiative are enhancing monitoring of people with type 2 diabetes, and when necessary, the local pharmacies guide people to contact their care unit. The aim is to support the care of people with type 2 diabetes and direct resources in healthcare centres to those whose treatment balance requires more attention.

For more information:

Tuula Lehto, Vice President, Communications and Sustainability, Oriola, tuula.lehto@oriola.com, tel. + 358 40 5885 343

Heli Salminen-Mankonen, Head of Data Driven Business and Research, Oriola, heli.salminen-mankonen@oriola.com, tel. +358 40 719 2945

Olli Hannuksela, Media Contact, Medical Information Manager, Boehringer Ingelheim Finland Ky, olli.hannuksela@boehringer-ingelheim.com, tel. +358 40 4553 899

Sari Koski, Development Manager, the Finnish Diabetes Association, sari.koski@diabetes.fi, tel. +358 50 310 6600

Charlotta Sandler, Director of Pharmaceutical Affairs, the Association of Finnish Pharmacies, charlotta.sandler@apteekkariliitto.fi, tel. +358 50 543 0411

The national diabetes survey investigates current treatment practices of people with type 2 diabetes as well as their own understanding of treatment. Additionally, the aim is to investigate how treatment is realised among patients with concomitant cardiovascular diseases. The patient survey is conducted during the spring 2021. The project is carried out in collaboration with pharmaceutical company Boehringer Ingelheim, Oriola, the Finnish Diabetes Association and the Association of Finnish Pharmacies.www.boehringer-ingelheim.fi, www.oriola.com, www.diabetes.fi, www.apteekkariliitto.fi