Never has there been more healthcare data available, but the process for life sciences companies to acquire the data they want can cause a lot of headaches. From the need to jump between different vendors to get different types of data (clinical, medical claims, prescription, EHR, etc.) to then cleaning the data to make it usable for analytics and eliminating any redundancies between the different sources, the process is filled with inefficiencies.

Earlier this year, Prognos Health announced its new Prognos Marketplace, which provides access to a wide range of different data sources in one location in order to solve the common pain points life sciences companies experience during the data acquisition process. PM360 spoke with Theresa Greco, Chief Commercial & Operations Officer of Prognos Health, about the impact this could have for data analytics in the life sciences.

Theresa Greco, Chief Commercial & Operations Officer of Prognos Health

PM360: As healthcare data keeps expanding, what have you seen as the biggest challenges life sciences marketers face in identifying the right data that can actually help them?

Theresa Greco: First, I would categorize healthcare data in a couple ways. There’s the more traditional data such as prescription, medical claims, etc. And then you have newer data sources such as lab or clinical-resulted data, EHR data, and other emerging datasets that are still somewhat exploratory and untapped that will continue to grow as technology advances. The big challenge for pharma is how to tap into all of these emerging and traditional sets and integrate them into a useful form to maximize impact on whatever business application they are trying to solve. One way we are uniquely trying to address that problem is by providing access to a broad set of transactional, record-level data within a single source through our Prognos Marketplace. Through this marketplace, pharma has access to hundreds of data partners that are both linkable and patient-centered while still offering HIPAA compliant, de-identified data.

What makes this Marketplace different from other methods a company may use to secure data?

It starts with what makes Prognos so unique, which boils down to three key things. First, is what we call “clinical truths,” which are basically how we apply our knowledge of clinical-resulted datasets coming in from our lab providers to truly standardize and create consistent datasets that can be used in multi-purpose analytics at scale. The second thing is our FACTOR Logic patent-pending technology, which allows us to essentially partition data on hundreds of millions of unique patients so it can be utilized concurrently, stored in memory, and then provide a real patient-centric view in seconds. The third thing is our Marketplace. This large ecosystem provides access to over 400 unique sources that are linkable by Datavant’s common tokenization engine. This allows our clients to build a patient-centered cohort, so they can take a very large population and narrow it down to the population specific to their business needs.

When users login to the Marketplace, what do they actually see? How can they sort through and choose the data they want?

Within the Marketplace, a client can build their cohort using a lot of different variables including the amount of patient history, the other medications patients have been on, product groupings, and so on. The sources of the data, however, are blinded, so they can only see what type it is such as Prescription Claims Source 3. Then, within that construct, instead of having to contract with two, three, four different vendors for those various datasets, a client can build a cohort, request a price quote, make a purchase, and receive delivery all in one platform. During that process they can select from a number of options, such as saying they want X amount of years of history plus a monthly refresh of the data for one year. So really this streamlines the buying process on the client side from what is currently a multivendor, often multi-month process.

What is the process like for companies to start to use this data and take advantage of it once they do make that purchase?

The data is delivered into what we call the “FACTOR Cloud,” which offers a couple different areas of flexibility. For clients with mature existing technology infrastructures in place, the FACTOR Cloud allows for seamless integration and clients can essentially bring their own data to be integrated with whatever they purchased. This cloud-based delivery also includes APIs and a developer toolkit.

Additionally, we offer an application suite with a number of different commercial benefits. For example, the alerts application allows clients to build patient-specific profiles that are relevant for their commercial brand activities and outreach to HCPs. Another application is our patient journey feature, which includes composable analytics such as market share as well as the various events you would see within a patient journey such as diagnosis, treatment, persistence/compliance, and very common things that life sciences organizations would want to understand about the patient journey and measure over time as part of the business KPIs.

With more data at their fingertips, how can marketers prevent the dreaded analysis paralysis?

It’s funny, about a year and a half ago, in one week two different clients said almost the exact same thing. Basically, “We have all this data but our analysts are spending all of their time managing vendors versus doing any actual analytics.” Well, that’s one of the things that Marketplace can help solve. But, more generally speaking, the answer depends on what it is the client is trying to solve for. Of course, it also matters what data they have to work with. For instance, it is a good idea to start by checking what sources are available to them that have already been purchased within their organization for some other purpose that possibly could serve their needs and build from there on what additional sources are required to answer their business questions.

What’s next for data analysis or data acquisition? What other trends or advances in this space can you see happening in the near future?

We feel very strongly that Marketplace is going to have a transformational effect on how brands engage with data. It’s giving marketers more perspective and allowing for different questions to be asked and faster answers to be found. For example, in a Marketplace view, when you’re looking at patients who have been diagnosed with a certain code, you’re also getting medical billing information and standardized lab test results that may allow you to identify other trends that perhaps you haven’t considered. Or you can fold that into AI technologies that might identify correlations you couldn’t make yourself. So, I expect this to drive transformational change in data analytics.

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