PM360’s Innovations Issue was established six years ago to serve as a comprehensive guide of the year’s most innovative Companies, Divisions, Startups, Products, Services, and Strategies. PM360 received more than 100 total submissions this year and picked the best in each category.
Here are our selections for the most innovative divisions of 2017.
Edward Mingle, Project Sponsor
Pharmacovigilance (PV), or drug safety, is the pharmacological science of collecting, detecting, assessing, monitoring, and preventing pharmaceutical adverse events (AEs). However, in PV, traditional volume-based models are antiquated. Individual Case Study Reports (ICSRs) are growing rapidly each year at an unsustainable pace, and the PV workforce is processing them within the constraints of outdated software. The Chrysalis team, an innovation taskforce within Celgene’s Global Safety Network, has been called to act—to boldly develop new digital solutions at the forefront of healthcare’s Big Data revolution that allow a leap forward in efficiency and effectiveness that will ultimately improve patient safety.
Chrysalis started in November 2016 with the announcement of the first of its partnerships with IBM Watson Health. Together, they are co-creating Watson for Patient SafetyTM (WPS). WPS is an Augmented Intelligence (AI) platform that will enable access to a constantly growing, aggregated view of clinical, research, and social health data to support the ongoing monitoring of patient safety. In addition, Chrysalis is forming partnerships with several other technology providers to address other ways to vastly improve PV.
The team is responsible for presiding over Celgene’s first implementation of AI into its business and have so far supported the development of a number of cognitive services which will be applied in the PV domain. They have also developed novel approaches for the large-scale application of annotation for machine learning in PV.
Within Celgene, the Chrysalis management team is also committed to including each and every Celgene Global Safety Network employee in the transformation. Recently, they launched the Chrysalis Gateway, an interactive team website that will engage the Global Safety Network with news, data insights, and opportunities to get involved with the project’s ongoing development.
Deloitte Digital’s Life Sciences Agency
Larry Mickelberg, Managing Director and Agency Lead
In the past, agency was an outside business specialized in creating top-down brand messaging driven by understanding health conditions and the products and services that treat them. Today, agency is a collaborative, cross-team, horizontal approach to creating coherent and compelling customer experiences, shaped by holistic understanding of patient journeys with their varied touchpoints, lifestyles, and emotional triggers.
Deloitte felt that life sciences companies and brands needed to change their approach to marketing—and to agencies—to achieve this, and set about creating something new to help life sciences marketers be effective and efficient in reaching customers beyond the traditional, transactional marketing model. So, five years ago they created Deloitte Digital, a creative digital consultancy, and just this past year that unit launched a new life sciences agency business.
Deloitte Digital is able to move the healthcare agency business ahead with the pace of industry change through expertise in design, connectivity, data intelligence, automation, exponential technologies, experience innovation, marketing agility, the cloud, and more. They are working with clients to re-wire healthcare marketing, adopting customer-centric approaches and transformative new digital engagement and campaign models to accelerate innovation and drive improved health outcomes.
For example, they work with leading tech platforms to imagine, deliver, and run a cutting-edge patient engagement platform that is used by patients to help track their well-being and connect them with their care team, other patients, and even pharma. As well, teams in their brand-new NYC creative studio are working with next-generation technologies to create entirely new kinds of content, brand stories, and immersive health experiences.
Galderma Laboratories, L.P.
Director, Communications NA
Nestlé Skin Health
Patient rebate and discount cards are generally frustrating and complicated. They clutter the marketplace and, more often than not, end up delivering a poor experience to patients, which can backfire on healthcare professionals and their staff. Galderma recognized this problem and set up a team to strategically develop Galderma CareConnect, a patient savings program designed to increase the accessibility and affordability of the full portfolio of Galderma prescription products.
Before launch, the team researched the shortcomings of other patient savings programs. They found:
- Consumers are confused by rebate and discount cards
- Patient savings programs are ubiquitous (every company has one)
- Patient savings programs change frequently and are difficult to explain
- Patient savings programs are narrow in the products they cover
- Clinicians don’t have much confidence in recommending them to the patient.
The team designed Galderma CareConnect to overcome these issues. When Galderma CareConnect launched in December 2016 the team made the program available at any licensed U.S. pharmacy, included the full portfolio of Galderma Rx products, and made the price structure easy-to-understand, with most products starting at $35 based on the patients’ insurance coverage.
To date, more than 1,000,000 prescriptions have been filled using Galderma CareConnect. The marketing efforts behind the program have driven strong traffic to the site with more than 12,350 unique sessions in a five-month period (December 2016 through April 2017). And galdermacc.com is “stickier” than most with a reported bounce rate of 0.42% compared to the industry average website bounce rate of 50%.
Government Policy Systems
TAG MM, a division of The Access Group
Seth Gordon, Managing Partner
TAG MM’s Government Policy Systems (GPS) division delivers expert insight and content regarding current and emerging healthcare government, policy, and systems issues. The increasing shift to a population health perspective is one such trend that requires a new way of thinking for all key stakeholders to ensure that clinical pathways are appropriately designed, adopted, and implemented. The pharma manufacturers who will succeed in this new environment are those that are able to articulate their products’ value in terms that matter to health systems as they develop their clinical pathways.
GPS publishes regularly in the areas of health systems and population health, addressing population health management as a means of helping health systems to manage the increasing risk they are taking on. In addition to publications, GPS conducts ongoing research on this topic, reaching more than 70 health systems to date.
GPS also participates in live programs such as the Population Health Colloquium Special Edition: Pop Health Policy and Strategy Under the New Administration summit in December 2016, during which GPS held a mini summit titled Successful Partnerships Between Pharmaceutical Manufacturers and Health Systems to Improve Population Health. This two-part presentation examined the intersection of health system reimbursement models and pharmaceuticals and the focus on population health as the future of health management.
Richard G. Stefanacci, DO, MGH, MBA, AGSF, CMD, a former Health Policy Scholar for the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services, Associate Professor in Health Policy for the University of the Sciences in Philadelphia, and faculty member of the Jefferson School of Population Health, leads GPS. He is joined by a team of current and former payers and policy leaders.
inVentiv Health Communications
INC Research/inVentiv Health
Eleanor Petigrow, Managing Director, Business Development
In 2017, inVentiv Health Communications, part of INC Research/inVentiv Health, was launched to integrate and transform its best-in-class agencies. Being purpose-built this way makes it possible—and easy—for the company’s agencies to tap into the knowledge and insights from an entire company focused on health. Being part of INC Research/inVentiv Health provides inVentiv Health Communications with access to experts and perspectives in all areas of healthcare—including patients, EHRs, government, and pharma—all just a simple step or phone call away.
Additionally, the company also added six accelerators to the center of their network that lets them quickly scale new ideas and approaches across all of their agencies. Those accelerators are focused in: 1) Data Science; 2) Innovation; 3) Behavioral Insights; 4) Market Research, Analytics, and Insights; 5) Reputation and Risk Management; and 6) Digital and Social.
These six accelerators bring shared platforms and data sets as well as unique experts that can be dedicated to each agency at the moments they need it most. Over time, the accelerators embed the knowledge and tools in each agency to further transform the way the company works. They also help to deliver unique perspectives to clients, including:
- Annual trend reports
- Optimizing marketing and quantifying value in a new era of accountable marketing
- Longitudinal ethnography with patients and families
- Weekly analysis of changing political landscape
- Original research into payer mindsets
- How to prevent your advocates from becoming activists
In today’s complex healthcare environment, great ideas alone aren’t enough to bring brands to dominance. They need to be tested in the fire of the real world; honed by the people who know the molecules better than anyone; and delivered by healthcare implementation experts who truly understand what a product can become.
Deb Dominianni, General Manager – MedTech Division
The life sciences sector is undergoing rapid change, driven by the same kinds of technological advances that are reshaping our culture. For instance, the traditional pipeline has been fragmented. Delivery devices, software, and diagnostic components are developing in tandem with drug treatments and are then packaged together. And, consumers, demanding to be more engaged in healthcare decisions, are rejecting traditional sources of information in favor of websites and social media.
In response to these changes, Benchworks created MedTech, a division of the company that guides clients through the commercialization of new medical devices and technology solutions in the fields of telemedicine, diagnostics, drug delivery, and infusion.
The MedTech division seeks to fill knowledge and resource gaps in the new normal of today’s pharma world, while fostering the ongoing innovation and transformation of life sciences markets. This new division employs an integrated, expanded set of capabilities that leverages Benchworks’ expertise, including the company’s robust understanding of treatments in a wide variety of therapeutic areas and its experience helping clients commercialize and market drug-delivery systems, diagnostic tools, and cutting-edge biologics.
As a result, Benchworks can help pull together all the moving pieces that now make up the pharma pipeline, and support client commercialization needs through both drug development and device delivery. During the past year, Benchworks has supported a range of client needs that validate this trend toward delivery and logistics with medical stories and communications to drive both provider and patient engagement.
Examples of their success include the launch campaign for a new drug delivery system incorporating a prefilled diluent syringe and an unbranded hemophilia surgery planner that specialty pharmacies and nurses at hemophilia treatment centers could share with patients and their caregivers.
Precision Value & Health
Larry Blandford, Executive Vice President and Managing Partner
J. Bruce Leavitt, Executive Vice President, Managing Partner
In maximizing the commercial success of a life sciences product, optimizing market access is a top challenge. Innovators must gain critical insights to guide a strong strategic plan, leverage the evidence, and develop resources that demonstrate product value. They must then implement solutions to deliver that evidence to influencers and decision makers. In the current landscape, pharma manufacturers commonly rely on multiple vendors to address individual aspects of this approach. Without receiving the understanding and expertise of how all of these are interconnected, manufacturers are left trying to close the gaps themselves.
Enter Precision Xtract, a newly formed global market access consultancy developed by Precision Value & Health. Precision Xtract represents a new alignment of existing, industry-leading consulting services configured to provide pharma innovators with unified health economics and outcomes research, global pricing, access strategy and analytics, pull-through, and data management.
Assembled from experienced teams previously aligned to the Precision for Value and Precision Health Economics brands, Precision Xtract represents a unique combination of specialists with professional experiences in academia, pharma, consultancies, and as payers. The new entity leverages this experience to offer innovators a wide array of interconnected market access solutions and support.
Deriving inspiration from the plant extracts that often form the basis for new, breakthrough therapies, Precision Xtract’s mission is to extract the most valuable insights that unlock the science, strategies, and solutions powering global market access—and assist its clients in navigating the route to commercial success.
Debuting in Q4 of this year, Precision Xtract hit the ground running. With more than 100 employees located in offices across the United States, Canada, and Europe, the new full-service consultancy provides significant depth and breadth across each of its areas of expertise.
John Moran, Advanced Research Solutions Leader
The Primary Intelligence business unit of IQVIA (formerly QuintilesIMS) has introduced a novel type of Awareness, Trial & Usage solution: The Integrated Specialty ATU. Primary Intelligence has combined the advanced primary research capabilities from BrandImpact with unparalleled secondary data and therapeutic expertise from IQVIA to create this new solution exclusively for brand teams competing in complex, specialty markets.
The Integrated Specialty ATU is a fully customized brand tool that reveals the key drivers of, and barriers to, brand choice with more actionable results by combining the insights of physician research with the power of robust quantitative data. Commercial teams can use this tool to respond to customer needs ahead of competitors, thereby increasing choice for their brands.
For example, a brand team can now gain a comprehensive comparison of how physicians rate the impact and importance of the brand’s messages alongside the actual impact of those messages on new patient starts through robust modeling. This helps the team make better decisions about the optimal message order and combinations of messages that maximize physician interest, motivation, and market share. Teams get more actionable results and can plan strategies with greater confidence in driving brand performance.
Because primary research is integrated with secondary research, and the output of the tool includes modeling of this dataset, researchers immediately see the magnitude of any identified problem or opportunity in terms of utilization impact on their product. Thus, market researchers and business insights leaders can create a mini business case to take to their brand team with more compelling, action-oriented recommendations.