Key opinion leaders (KOLs) are health care leaders who make a high-impact footprint while advancing medical science. Thought Leader Select specializes in delivering objective, validated data on the skills and experiences of KOLs, so that pharmaceutical companies can seek their advice and guidance in the development of new medicines.
Over the past several years, Thought Leader Select has studied physician key opinion leaders who treat diabetes and analyzed their involvement in many areas, including clinical research, treatment guidelines involvement, publishing, reimbursement involvement and participation in advocacy efforts. In a recent assessment of nearly 500 diabetes KOLs across the United States, Thought Leader Select examined their participation in patient advocacy activities. Using keywords to link these KOLs with such activities, Thought Leader Select found that 62% of physicians regularly take part in patient advocacy efforts, such as participation in advocacy organizations, patient education or legislative efforts (see Chart 1).
Of the 301 KOLs with advocacy involvement, most take part in five or fewer activities, while only 3% of them boast 10 or more advocacy activities and/or awards. In addition to activities through the American Diabetes Association (ADA) and American Association of Clinical Endocrinologists (AACE) – especially the American College of Endocrinology’s Power of Prevention (POP) program – top advocacy initiatives and organizations include:
• Taking Control of Your Diabetes (TCOYD).
• Youth diabetes camps across the United States.
• Diabetes Action Research and Education Foundation.
• Educational articles, brochures, CD-ROMs, speeches, and seminars for patients with diabetes.
• Petitions and other legislative efforts to improve health coverage, benefits and safety for patients with diabetes.
• Creating state diabetes plans.