Frequently Asked Questions

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You receive online information services:
Scientific reports with evidence from literature & product features to compare medicines within a therapeutic group.
Assessments of the risk potential of the products and articles.
You receive web tools:

  • Interactive matrix-models (desktop & tablet) to rank preferred medicines by weighting selection criteria.
  • eSessions to support expert opinion workshops.
  • A database with export facilities for risk assessment reports.

You receive support / consultancy:

  • Introduction how to implement STEPSelect in a region.
  • Training how to apply matrix models in pharmacotherapy.
  • Procurement reference contracts.
  • Helpdesk support for projects, how to conduct a live workshop or an e-Session on www.stepselect.com
  • Updates and desk-editing.

Regarding commercial questions:
Rob Brenninkmeijer, Pharmacist, rob.brenninkmeijer@digitalismm.ie

Scientific & methodological questions:
Dr. Robert Janknegt, Hospital Pharmacist & Clinical Pharmacologist, rob.janknegt@digitalismm.ie

Background information:
Prof. Dr. Michael Scott, Head of Pharmacy and Medicines Management, drmichael.scott@northerntrust.hscni.net
Dr Jill Mairs, Regional Procurement Pharmacist, jill.mairs@northerntrust.hscni.net

STEPSelect is not an automatic pilot for decision making with a mandatory outcome. The selection process is subject to new scientific evidence, innovations, actual pricing etc. Therefore the information services are frequently updated. STEPSelect is foremost a tool for the selection process used by professionals. While at the same time decision making is more rational, transparent and accountable towards the medical-pharmaceutical community and the society at large. The quality of the selection process itself has a large multiplying potential within the cycle of medicines management services: procurement, formulary management, prescribing, medication reconcilement. Iteration, recycling and re-adjusting of the selection process can be quite easily established. A periodic review of the information and valuations can be done more thorough from the perspective of a former decision.

A STEPSelect production is dynamic in its content and flexible in its application. The process, services and tools are open to involvement of regional experts to adjust the online information to local needs and insights. A major quality aspect of medicines selection aims at the reduction of the error potential of using too many medicines for the same condition but at the same time not to push one particular drug everywhere. That certain communities sometimes select different preferred drugs is ‘all in the game’, and can be influenced by certain local contracting conditions.

The online information matrix model to structure the clinical selection can also serve as an interactive tool within the professional community to replay the ranking of the more preferred medicines against the less preferred ones. As such the matrix model not only structures expert opinion, but also ‘learns’ from the outcomes in an interactive way. Most instructive are group workshops, so-called eSessions with tablets (wifi, 3G or 4G connected). In these settings, participants can log in to weight the importance of selection criteria and to compare their ranked list of preferred medicines with an expert group. Participants can also compare and discuss the different outcomes real-time within a group session. These sessions lead notably to more consensus than just by disputing arguments. And all kinds of biased, prejudiced or single-minded opinions are eliminated.