29 September 2020

New survey of patient groups reveals major concerns about safety

Advocacy groups around the world believe that patients feel vulnerable and sidelined under the COVID-19 pandemic, according to a new survey. The new poll of patient groups in 27 countries found that 70% believe accessing treatment and care is a major concern for patients at the moment, with nearly 80% saying that personal safety is also a big worry.

Over half of the 1,720 patient groups surveyed, including 307 organisations supporting people with cancer, reported having more contact with patients since the start of the pandemic. Many are hosting telephone helplines and using direct messaging to provide support under COVID-19.

At the same time, the survey reports that 67% of the patient groups responding experienced a decrease in revenue during 2020, with 30% saying the decrease was “substantial”.

The survey was conducted by PatientView, a UK-based research, publishing, and consultancy group specialising in providing patient experience data to the pharmaceutical industry.

It found a varying assessment of how well governments are doing in tackling the pandemic across Europe. Patient groups in countries such as Austria, Denmark, Ireland and Greece rated the job their government is doing as very effective. At the other end of the scale, the governments of Poland and the UK ranked lowest in Europe.