Ever since the New Year started, I’ve been looking forward to the ePharma Summit, beginning today here in New York City.
This digital marketing conference provides keynotes, breakout sessions and in-person opportunities to connect pharma with it’s various stakeholders – including physicians, consumers, health plans, caregivers and digital health activists.
I’m here to meet interesting people and to gain some knowledge. My particular interest is in learning more about ways to connect in the digital world – but with purpose to engage patients as partners in clinical drug development (clinical trials).
If you are curious about our efforts at Lilly Clinical Open Innovation, please feel free to browse this site and follow us on Twitter @Lilly_COI. I look forward to meeting you!
Photo Credit: national museum of american history via Compfight cc
Editors note: please be sure to vote in our poll at the bottom of the post!
There are many factors that can turn a patient away from seeking potentially beneficial treatment options. This is true for both clinical trials and even routine visits to the doctor.
For example, in some people, needle phobia prevents them from getting much-needed vaccinations. In some cases, people just wince when they see a needle and go through with it anyways and in others – their intense needle phobia prevent them from getting vaccinations altogether.
We recently came across an interesting approach Healthline is taking to help kids ease through their needle phobia. More…
People are inherently social – in all walks and aspects of our lives. This includes patients and patient advocates and their participation in healthcare. Individuals, whether they meet at a conference or have built bonds based on their shared experiences with their disease and treatments, are connected like Legos.
There are many social networks where patients interact online. As we examine below, data scientists and researchers are using publicly available posts on Twitter in new ways.
Sick? Tweet about it!
For those who aren’t feeling well, they often turn to their mobile phone or computer and tweet about being under the weather. Researchers at Brigham Young University are paying attention and have parsed tweets and their location data to help entities tracking disease find out where flu symptoms are popping up and where the disease might be headed next. In addition, folks at MappyHealth have built out the same concept to include the trending of a variety of diseases in different regions of the world!
By utilizing Twitter data and location, those involved in disease management can monitor, in real-time, the current state of an outbreak and thereby develop intervention steps to better manage an epidemic – influenza in this case.
Twitter as a discovery tool
Twitter might be the perfect medium for finding conversations amongst patients. Here’s why: More…
When it comes to terms we use at Lilly COI, “patient advocate” is one of those we’re using more and more, and have come to treat with the utmost respect.
Realizing not everyone might know what a patient advocate is, we’re going to take this post to share on the important role a patient advocate fills, how they are helping to improve health care, and – more specifically – are impacting our effort to transform drug development.
By definition, a patient advocate is an individual or organization that represents patients to ensure they are getting the care from the health system, helping them through the complicated processes involved with getting the *best* care possible. (source: Wikipedia and APHA)
Why are patient advocates necessary?
Unfortunately, navigating the health care system is difficult, and assuring that individual rights and public good is preserved sometimes takes someone fighting for your interest as a patient. In the United States, complications come from bureaucracy either when dealing with government programs, corporations, navigating insurance processes, forms and endless loops, or even finding out which clinical trials you might qualify for.
Here at Lilly COI, we’ve had the opportunity to meet some amazing patient advocates, who live a passionate, vocal life in service of patients everywhere.
Pharma needs to stand up and listen to advocates