Jayne Hornung is the vice president of pharmacy and medical programs at MMIT. She is MMIT’s clinical subject matter expert, and conducts ongoing research of new indication and policy data while helping the client experience team gain expertise on clinical knowledge. She creates MMIT’s clinical perspectives for all current indications and helped develop the Policies and Restrictions (PAR) data platform. Prior to joining MMIT, Hornung was a medical information scientist at AstraZeneca, a clinical pharmacist at Cancer Treatment Centers of America and Home Solutions Infusion Services, and owned and operated an independent pharmacy until 2006. She is a registered pharmacist in the state of Pennsylvania.

Q: What’s your day to day like?

On top of developing our oncology product, the client experience team comes to me when they have clinical questions that clients are posing to them. In addition, the operations team asks questions about how to assess policies when they are unsure. So I answer a lot of questions about our data and how our clients can find the answers to their business questions through our data. On a daily basis, I create the workbooks [a comprehensive view of an indication, including the drug market basket and pipeline products] for the clinical content in our data and find what’s important in the policies that’s relevant to our clients and that we should be exposing in our data.

Q: You pioneered some of the internship programs at MMIT. How did that come about and how have those programs grown?

We needed some additional clinical support when we were growing for short term sprints. I had remembered when I was in pharmacy school, we had a lot of opportunities to go and work at different companies, and I thought, “Well, why can’t people come here and learn, because this is an interesting experience!” How drugs are covered by a plan and why they’re covered or not is not taught in pharmacy school, but it’s very much a part of everyday life for a pharmacist. We developed three programs with Philadelphia-area schools. This small level of involvement helps recruit students, so they understand what we do when they get here. If they have interest, they can reach out to me.

I believe as we grow, we’re going to need more clinicians here. As these students who’ve had experiences here graduate, we’re keeping in touch with them so when we have openings, they can apply.

Q: What are some of the other larger projects you’re working on?

We are currently trying to create as many oncology indications as possible and a new Advanced Oncology Analytics platform. Right now, I have eight students working for me remotely who are researching oncology indications so we can get the data into the database quickly and we can stand up our oncology offering as soon as possible.

Q: What clinical areas should clients be keeping an eye on?

Oncology is the area that has not truly been managed by health plans, and it’s where drug approvals are growing exponentially year over year. The criteria is also the most complex that we’ll see in policies, so there’s a real need in the industry for pharma companies and doctors to understand how those are managed, so their patients can get access.

Q: Are there any big industry trends that clients should be looking out for?

I don’t think it’s a shift that clients aren’t aware of, but I think as the cost of drugs go up and health plans need to manage those costs, our client success leads are getting questions every day about how the policies are changing, and how payers are changing their policies to respond to the high cost of drugs, and to more oncology drugs being in the market. Those are the big questions that everybody is watching to see what happens over the next few years, specifically in oncology because there’s so much growth there.

Q: How is MMIT poised to help with the current trends we’re seeing in market access?

Since we sit in a unique position between the payers, providers and pharma, we can expose the policy data so doctors understand what pathway they need to follow for patients to get access to the appropriate therapy at the appropriate place in treatment. Pharmaceutical manufacturers can make sure that they’re doing everything they can for patients to get access to the medications that are available on the market. As far as our provider network, we push all of this information out to providers. It’s important that we sit where we can be transparent with all of this information.

Q: What’s your favorite part of your job?

Every day is new. Every day is different questions, it’s never ever the same and it’s not boring. I love the variety in it, there’s always a new indication to stand up, there’s always a new workbook to build. So that and the education part of it are my two favorite things.

Q: What do you like to do outside of work?

We own a boat, so we go boating almost every weekend when the weather’s nice. I like to travel, and we go boating everywhere, the Chesapeake, Delaware, and my daughter lives in Miami, so we love to go there too. I also love to craft, so I knit and crochet, you name it. I’m a crafter, or “maker” as they call them now.

by Carina Belles