Health Outcomes Liaison Teams Hire PharmDs to Interact with US Payers

HOLs Should Have Scientific and Economic Backgrounds, finds Cutting Edge Information

Business Wire


Top-performing pharmaceutical companies recruit health outcomes liaison (HOL) candidates with strong backgrounds in science and economics to build a dynamic outcomes liaison team.

The new Cutting Edge Information report, “Advanced Health Outcomes Liaison and Managed Care Liaison Teams: Delivering Health Economics and Clinical Data To Payers,” discovered that it is imperative that HOLs can confidently address questions from both fields. Additionally, ideal HOLs come from a scientific educational background and can incorporate industry knowledge and strategic business acumen into payer conversations.

The study found that HOL teams prefer PharmDs to interact with US payers. This qualification is especially important considering that most HOL teams interact with clinical pharmacists and pharmacy directors when presenting product dossiers to payer organizations.

By comparison, teams working in single-payer systems such as those in Canada and the UK prefer individuals with health economics-heavy backgrounds. A strong focus on cost-effectiveness in these markets requires an HOL well-versed in health economics and outcomes research.

When companies evaluate HOL candidates, another crucial consideration is prior experience. Scouting former MSLs with strong economic reasoning is a popular strategy when staffing new teams. Hiring former payer employees as HOLs also ensures that teams have a firm grasp on the pivotal factors influencing formulary decisions.

“As HOL teams emerge, developing payer relationships is a formidable challenge best tackled by individuals with strong industry backgrounds,” said Nicole May, research analyst at Cutting Edge Information. “Potential HOLs should possess strong communication skills. HOLs who present dense technical data concisely encourages payers to focus on a product’s value proposition without getting bogged down in details.”

The study “Advanced Health Outcomes Liaison and Managed Care Liaison Teams: Delivering Health Economics and Clinical Data To Payers,” available at (, includes staffing and budget metrics to help companies build their HOL and MCL functions. Health economics teams and medical affairs executives can use this report to:

  • Determine what team structures and reporting lines work best for HOL and MCL teams.
  • Understand what data and tools HOL and MCL teams find most effective when speaking with payers.
  • Compare how other companies are planning, developing and sizing their liaison teams.

For more information about health outcomes liaison management, contact Cassie Demeter at 919-403-6583.

Cutting Edge Information
Cassie Demeter, 919-403-6583


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