PsorCARE Program by LEO Pharma Asia Focuses on Treatment Adher…

SINGAPORE, January 28, 2013 /PR Newswire-Asianet/ –

Psoriasis is a little-understood skin condition that carries a strong
social stigma through its emotional impact on sufferers that can far outweigh
the disease’s physical impact. That is why proper support and guidance from
healthcare providers is crucial in achieving optimal treatment adherence, one
of the main challenges in psoriasis management.

(Logo: http://www.newscom.com/cgi-bin/prnh/20110606/460992 )

LEO Pharma, the global leader in dermatology care, announced the launch of
the PsorCARE program in Asia, starting with Singapore, on 26 January 2013. The
first-of-its-kind initiative in the region, PsorCARE, which stands for
"Psoriasis Coach All-Round Education", will kick off on 26 January, 2013.
Developed by LEO Pharma Asia and PsorAsia, PsorCARE’s goal is to enhance the
counseling skills of healthcare practitioners for optimal patient-healthcare
provider relationship leading to better treatment outcomes for those who suffer
from the skin condition Psoriasis.

"LEO Pharma is committed to bringing this program to Asia because we are
aware of the challenges that patients with Psoriasis face in their everyday
lives. We want patients with Psoriasis to know that trained support is
available and that it is possible for them to live life as normally as
possible. Our ultimate aim is to give these patients hope and help improve the
quality of their lives," said Mr. Ng Choon-Peng, Chief Executive Officer of LEO
Pharma Asia Pte Ltd.

Psoriasis – the disease

Psoriasis is a chronic non-contagious inflammatory skin condition that
affects approximately 40,000 Singaporeans[1], and up to three in every hundred
people globally[2]. It is also one of the top ten most common skin diseases in
Singapore[3], but is little understood amongst the general public, earning it a
social stigma for its highly visible effects on human skin, such as thick,
silvery scales and pink raised skin. Hence, Psoriasis also exerts a
psychological toll on patients, with a 44 percent increased risk of suicide, a
39 percent increased risk of depression, and a 31 percent increased risk of
anxiety. Patients with severe psoriasis have a 72 percent increased risk of
depression[4].

The need for the PsorCARE program

Many patients require a deeper and better understanding of the disease and
the treatment options, which can be achieved with improved access to
information through healthcare professionals. With professional counseling
readily available, patients have the necessary support to better able to manage
both the physical and psychological toll from living with Psoriasis.

For patients who require long-term therapy for Psoriasis, treatment
adherence – whether it be medicinal, behavioral, lifestyle or a combination of
treatments – is essential for achieving optimal outcomes. Extensive market
research has identified that adherence is founded on good communication and a
positive relationship between the patient and healthcare practitioners. This
applies in particular to nurses who are in regular contact with patients[5].

Treatment adherence has been shown to be poor for many Psoriasis
patients[6]. It is defined by the World Health Organization (WHO) as "the
extent to which a person’s behavior – taking medication, following a diet,
and/or executing lifestyle changes, corresponds with agreed recommendations
from a health care provider". Psoriasis patients find it challenging to adhere
to their treatment modality because the application of their medicine requires
discipline and patience, and this impacts their lifestyle. More significantly,
the lack of apparent results dampens their morale which in turn affects
negatively, the follow-through with recommended treatment.

"The nurse’s role is extremely important, not just in terms of
administering care. Nurses are in a unique position to provide support and
strength through empathy and personalized care. Most importantly, they are able
to manage patients’ expectations of the treatment and encourage them to adhere
to it, because typical Psoriasis treatment requires long-term commitment to
topical medicines that present numerous application challenges," said Dr. Colin
Theng, Senior Consultant and Chief of the Psoriasis Unit, National Skin Centre
(NSC), and President of the Psoriasis Association of Singapore (PAS).

How does the PsorCARE program work?

With the objective of improving patient adherence for optimal outcome in
the treatment of psoriasis, PsorCARE is a peer-based training platform that
teaches trainees how to achieve a balance between asking, listening, and
informing when communicating with patients about the living and overcoming the
burden of their disease. The program also enables trainees to translate
theoretical approaches to practical implementation.

More about PsorCARE in Singapore

The session on 26 January 2013 will be led by Colleen Scalise, RN, Clinical
Lead, Nurse Counseling Program, and Field Nurse Team Leader, Bayshore Specialty
Rx and Dr. Theng. Seven major local hospitals will be participating in the
training session.

"As the leader of a team of field nurses for Canada’s largest provider of
home and community health care services, and having worked extensively with
Psoriasis patients, I understand the difficulties they go through physically
and emotionally, as well as adhering to their treatment. As a healthcare
provider, the support that we can give can benefit a patient greatly, and I am
pleased that we have this opportunity to share our knowledge and experience
with other healthcare providers here in Singapore," said Ms. Scalise.

About LEO Pharma

Founded in 1908, LEO Pharma is an independent, research-based
pharmaceutical company. LEO Pharma develops, manufactures and markets
pharmaceutical drugs to dermatologic and thrombotic patients in more than 100
countries globally. The company has its own sales for-ces in 61 countries and
employs around 5,000 people worldwide. LEO Pharma is headquartered in Denmark
and is wholly owned by the LEO Foundation.

About PsorAsia

Formally launched in February 2012, PsorAsia is the Federation of Psoriasis
Association in Asia-Pacific. It aims to improve medical care, greater public
understanding and increased research, and to explore the challenges psoriasis
presents to the Asia-Pacific psoriasis community. PsorAsia is spreadheaded by
Josefine De Guzman, the President and Founder of Psoriasis Philippines, Inc.
(PsorPhil). The country members of PsorAsia are all Asia countries, Australia
and New Zealand.

1. http://psoriasis.org.sg/psoriasis/psoriasis-facts.html

2. Papp KA, Henninger E. Safe psoriasis control: a new outcome measure for
the composite assessment of the efficacy and safety of psoriasis treatment. J
Cutan Med Surg. Dec 2005;9(6):276-283.

3. http://www.nsc.gov.sg/showpage.asp?id=141

4. Kurd Sk, Troxel AB, Crits-Christop P, and Gelfand JM. The risk of
depression, anxiety and suicidality in patient with psoriasis: a
population-based cohort study. Archives of Dermatology. 2010 Aug:146(8)891-5.
And: Gupta MA, Gupta AK. Depression and suicidal ideation in dermatology
patients with acne, alopecia areata, atopic dermatitis and psoriasis. British
Journal of Dermatology. 1998;139(5):846-50.

5. A Bewley, B Page. Maximising patient adherence for optimal outcomes in
psoriasis. JEADV 2011

6. Hol. Poster (P573) presented at the EADV Congress, 6-10 October, 2010,
Gothenburg, Sweden

PsorCARE Backgrounder

About PsorCARE (Psoriasis Coach All-Round Education)

PsorCARE is the first-of -its-kind initiative developed by LEO Pharma Asia
in collaboration with PsorAsia and the Singapore Nurses Association (SNA) to
enhance the counseling skills of healthcare practitioners to specifically
address a key unmet need of Psoriasis patients, treatment adherence.

The program aims to strengthen communication between healthcare
practitioners and their patient in an attempt to increase treatment adherence,
a major hurdle in the successful treatment and management of psoriasis, leading
to better treatment outcomes for their patients.

Psoriasis is a common condition that affects up to three in every hundred
people.[1] The most common type is ‘plaque’ psoriasis.[2] More than half of
patients with plaque psoriasis also experience symptoms on their scalp.[3]

Many patients require a deeper and better understanding of their disease
and available treatment options. Educating patients can be achieved by
providing them with comprehensive information pamphlets, explaining their
disease, and through treatment with other healthcare professionals including
counseling support. The strategy behind this holistic approach to disease
management is to allow the patient to better manage not only the physical
attributes of the disease but psychological aspects as well, minimizing
psoriasis’s impact on the patients’ daily lives.

For patients who require long-term therapy for psoriasis, treatment
adherence – whether it be medicinal, behavioral, lifestyle or a combination of
treatments – is essential for achieving optimal outcomes. Extensive market
research has identified that adherence is founded on excellent communication
and a positive relationship between the patient and healthcare practitioner.
This is particularly true in the case of nurses who are in regular contact with
the patients.[4] Nurses are in a unique position to lend their support to the
patient who often requires additional assistance in order to cope with
psoriasis. The support includes education, providing empathy, personalized care
and importantly, managing the patients’ expectations of the treatment.

PsorCARE Core Program

The objective of PsorCARE is to improve patient adherence for an optimal
outcome in the treatment of their psoriasis. The key feature of PsorCARE is a
gentle form of counseling which was developed in the 1980s using the
motivational interviewing (MI) method. The program addresses the following
topics:

– Patient’s perspective

– Psoriasis disease overview

– Counseling skills

– Treatment options

– Patient behavioral modification

PsorCARE Program Outcomes

A peer-based training platform, PsorCARE will strive to guide trainees to
achieve a balance between asking, listening, and informing when communicating
with patients about living with and overcoming the burden of their disease. The
program also enables trainees to translate theoretical approaches to practical
implementation.

PsorCARE will be rolled out initially in three markets across Asia starting
with Singapore. LEO Pharma will organize the first training session on 26 Jan
2012 and the session will be led by RN Colleen Scalise, Clinical Lead, Nurse
Counseling Program, and Field Nurse Team Leader, Bayshore Specialty Rx and Dr.
Colin Theng, Senior Consultant and Chief of the Psoriasis Unit, National Skin
Centre (NSC), and President of the Psoriasis Association of Singapore (PAS). A
total of seven restructured hospitals in Singapore will be participating in the
training session.

1. Papp KA, Henninger E. Safe psoriasis control: a new outcome measure for
the composite assessment of the efficacy and safety of psoriasis treatment. J
Cutan Med Surg. Dec 2005;9(6):276-283.

2. A.D.A.M. Medical Encyclopedia. Psoriasis.
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmedhealth/PMH0001470. Last accessed May 2012.

3. National Psoriasis Foundation. Scalp psoriasis. Scalp psoriasis.
Available at:
http://www.psoriasis.org/about-psoriasis/specific-locations/scalp. Accessed
June, 2012.

4. A Bewley, B Page. Maximizing patient adherence for optimal outcomes in
psoriasis. JEADV 2011

SOURCE: LEO Pharma