The Role of the Patient in Europe

Hensley Evans, Eva Struckmeyer, Natasha Williams and Irina Groysman


While organisations in the U.S. have embraced the patient as a key stakeholder for more than two decades, given the demonstrated influence of direct-to-consumer advertising, the connection between the patient and treatment decisions has historically been less clear in Europe. With more stringent regulatory guidelines for how and where companies can communicate directly with patients, organisations in Europe have sometimes struggled to know what to do with patient insights even when they do have them.

Pharmaceutical companies cite many key challenges when it comes to engaging with patients in Europe, but there are several opportunities to work around them to deliver patient and commercial value. This article addresses five of these challenges and ways to overcome them.

About the Experts

Hensley Evans is a principal in ZS’s Zurich office and is the leader of ZS’s consumer and patient marketing practice. Hensley has worked with many of the world’s top healthcare, biopharmaceutical and consumer packaged goods brands to offer strategic direction and insight.

Eva Struckmeyer is an associate principal in ZS’s Frankfurt office. In her role as leader of ZS’s marketing business area in the EU, Eva works on developing solutions that will help clients develop deeper customer insights, and define the right marketing strategies and tactics.

Natasha Williams is a strategy insights and planning manager in ZS’s Zurich office. She leads the firm’s patient and consumer health work in Europe, helping clients to bring in the patient perspective through designing more patient-centric organizations, gathering patient insights, defining patient engagement strategies and measuring initiatives to evaluate effectiveness.

Irina Groysman is a strategy insights and planning consultant in ZS’s London office. She is a member of ZS’s patient and consumer health team and helps clients with patient insights, strategy and patient support design.