May 18, 2015


North Star Opinion Research conducted an online survey of 400 physicians in the cardiology, neurology, gastroenterology, endocrinology, rheumatology, nephrology, infectious disease, oncology, pulmonology, and hematology specialties who prescribe specialty medications. The results show high levels of usage and satisfaction with specialty pharmacies, and two-thirds of those who work with specialty pharmacies think only some or none of traditional drug stores have the expertise to provide the range of specialty medications to patients. More detailed results from the survey include:

  1. These specialists say their patients have access to specialty medications from a variety of sources. Thirty-eight percent say their patients typically get their specialty medications from a specialty pharmacy, compared to 17 percent from a drug store, 8 percent from a doctor’s office or practice, 8 percent from a mail service pharmacy, and 3 percent from an outpatient clinic, with 23 percent saying patients get their medications from a combination of sources.
  2. Only two percent of the specialists who work with specialty pharmacies believe that all drug stores “have the expertise and capability to provide the different types of specialty medications to patients.” Two percent of these physicians say all traditional drug stores have the expertise and capability to provide these specialty drugs and 23 percent say most do, while 65 percent say some do and 4 percent say none.
  3. Specialists who work with specialty pharmacies are overwhelmingly satisfied with their services. Seventy percent of the specialists in these fields who prescribe specialty medications work with specialty pharmacies, and they are satisfied with the specialty pharmacy services by an 89 to 9 percent margin.

Read the study.