- Policy makers
- Paycheck writers
- Product makers (vendors)
- Professional advisors (consultants)
All of these are considered to be sufficient to protect their own interests. However, none of them view patients as being sufficient enough to project their own interests, and all of them feel that it is their role to speak for patients. At the same time, patients (myself included) reject each of them as being adequate representatives of what we truly need and care about (see this list as an example).
As a general rule, patient's don't lobby, testify before congress, negotiate prices, aggregate themselves into societies or groups of like minded people (there are some exceptions for each).
So, how can we (as patients) get what we need? I have some thoughts on this topic, but would love to hear yours.