Why, when and how to assess and use patient preferences in medical product decision-making

The PREFER project has developed recommendations for how and when it is best to perform and include patient preferences in decision making during the medical product life cycle. Supporting the development of guidelines for structured patient input into decision-making for the pharmaceutical industry, regulatory authorities, health technology assessment bodies and reimbursement agencies!

An updated version was published on 30 May after receiving a positive qualification opinion from CHMP, the European Medicines Agency's (EMA) committee responsible for human medicines.

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Want to know why, when and how PREFER recommends that pharma, regulators, HTA bodies and payers assess and use patient preferences in medical product decision-making? In this brief, we explain when and why results from patient preference studies can inform decision-making. We also describe how the PREFER framework should be used, how to involve key stakeholders, how to pick a method for your research questions, explore how participants’ psychological characteristics may offer important insights into preference heterogeneity, and how educational materials can support patients’ understanding. Or in brief, a plain language summary of the reason why we think structured patient input can improve medical product decision-making.

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  • Disclaimer: This website and its contents reflects the PREFER project's view and not the view of IMI, the European Union or EFPIA.


The Patient Preferences in Benefit-Risk Assessments during the Drug Life Cycle (PREFER) project has received funding from the Innovative Medicines Initiative 2 Joint Undertaking under grant agreement No 115966. This Joint Undertaking receives support from the European Union's Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme and the European Federation of Pharmaceutical Industries and Associations (EFPIA).