How IQVIA is optimising respiratory pathways to enable long-term NHS recovery


As the NHS continues its recovery from Covid-19, IQVIA has been working with integrated care systems, with its analytics capabilities helping them to deliver on regional and national priorities.

The NHS has been significantly impacted during the pandemic and must prioritise workforce investment, COVID-19 recovery and a reduction in the backlog of care. To support patients, key objectives have been outlined in the NHS Long Term Plan and the NHS Operational Planning and Contracting Guidance. These objectives support the integrated care systems (ICSs) priorities to:

  • Enhance experience of care
  • Improve the health and wellbeing of the population
  • Reduce per capita cost of healthcare and improve productivity
  • Address healthcare inequalities
  • Increase the wellbeing and engagement of the workforce

IQVIA, a human data science company, has been working with ICSs to achieve these priorities as well as the overarching aims of the NHS. Through its Interface pharmacist team, a team of clinical pharmacists and nurses who support primary care and community health services, IQVIA can support with patient identification and treatment actions, therapy reviews, patient and clinical education and flexible capacity support.

Case study: Leicester, Leicestershire & Rutland (LLR) ICS

IQVIA were commissioned by LLR to deliver a Respiratory Optimisation Programme over a seven-week period. This clinical support was intended to ease some of the pressure caused by the backlog of care and allow vulnerable patients to receive timely support due by providing additional clinical capacity. Over the course of the programme, IQVIA were able to:

  • Identify opportunities for improvement, support efficient allocation of resources and deliver patient-centric services which improve access to medicines and optimise care.
  • Identify gaps in care, recognise patients at risk of adverse events and improve patient outcomes.
  • Provide skilled capacity to deliver best care at scale and address healthcare inequalities.
  • Provide mentorship opportunities to the multi-disciplinary team and support and sustain enhanced care.

IQVIA’s Interface pharmacists delivered 3,000 COPD clinic appointments across the LLR ICS, working with 71 practices – with 54 per cent of the pharmacy practices in the LLR ICS. Across these practices, 11,348 patients had a diagnosis of COPD recorded. 8,692 of these (77 per cent of the total) were identified as potential beneficiaries of treatment optimisation, and 7,420 of these patients (85 per cent) were invited to a COPD clinic.

Of those patients seen in clinic,

  • 635 patients received an escalation to their current level of management
  • 100 patients received a de-escalation of their current level of management
  • 2,132 patients maintained their current level of management
  • 1,119 non-pharmalogical interventions were made, including referrals for smoking cessation or pulmonary rehabilitation

Due to the pandemic and subsequent backlog in care, many of these patients had no recorded care process in the last 12 months. After the pharmacist clinics there were significant increases to these key markers, including:

  • A 96 per cent increase in patients who had a COPD review
  • A 171 per cent increase in patients who had their inhaler technique checked
  • A 212 per cent increase in patients with a CAT assessment

The seven-week support programme provided LLR with the additional clinical resource needed to assess and proactively manage patients with COPD. The increased capacity benefited the health and well-being of patients whilst the multi-disciplinary team were engaged with the review to provide ongoing, continued care.


IQVIA utilises extensive data and analytics capabilities to inform clinical decision-making.  To support and drive key advancements towards improving patient outcomes, IQVIA is at the forefront of unlocking the potential of NHS health data to realise future health improvements for the UK and deliver transformative benefits for the patients of today and tomorrow. IQVIA believes that the value of NHS health data is not in the data per se, but in the clinical decision-making it can inform. As a trusted partner to health systems and providers, we use our extensive data and analytics capabilities to transform health outcomes and deliver pioneering biomedical research within the 95 per cent of NHS Trusts who use one or more of our services.