Celebrating Patient Centricity: eyeforpharma Latin America Awards 2015
Pushing the frontier of customer centricity in Latin America requires local, not regional solutions.
As a region, Latin America has actually been amongst the most progressive when it comes to the adoption and proliferation of digital approaches, therefore, it was not so surprising to see the innovation that was showcased at the inaugural eyeforpharma Latin America Awards last week in Miami.
The finalists displayed sophisticated knowledge of the problems they sought to address; in an age of digital and mobile advances, it is tempting to approach every issue with a technological solution, yet some of the most elegant entries involved simple organizational processes tailored to the local context of the need.
In line with eyeforpharma’s broader agenda, the awards were designed to celebrate individuals and projects whose contributions are helping the transition towards customer-centricity; something we argue is a necessary shift for the sustainability of the healthcare industry.
Winner: Most Valuable Patient Initiative or Service
Novartis; Programa Pro-Memoria
Alzheimer’s diagnosis must be handled with incredible sensitivity, due to the physical and emotional burden involved; in fact physicians will often delay diagnosis to reduce the impact on the patient. This factor, combined with the reality that HCP’s globally are highly pressured for time, created a situation where sufficient support was not being delivered to patients or caregivers to guide them through treatment and disease management.
Programa Pro-Memoria combines educational material, with telephone assistance and devices to deliver support and also medication reminders. Novartis actually sat down with a wide range of specialists, from neurology, psychiatry to geriatrics art therapists and physiotherapists, to create an incredibly rich resource for caregivers. Putting this in one space and making it accessible effectively created access for each patient to a sophisticated support network that wouldn’t have been possible under the previous model, and it showed in the results. Compliance increased by 17%.
From the finalists, one project really stood out, the NCD Partnership, a global project by Lilly that works to tackle the burden of treating non-communicable diseases to healthcare systems. Within Brazil, they are working closely with the public institutions to trial new preventative education programs to reduce the development of type-II diabetes, and are conducting sophisticated RCTs to measure the results.
Sandoz also showed promise with their patient education program around the dangers of overusing antibiotics in children, which they targeted towards HCPs and mothers. Although launched across Latin America, Sandoz showed a tactile approach to engagement, deploying a mix of print and digital media depending on each demographic's preferred engagement channel. Ecuador showed strong engagement with education posters, while their video messaging received great feedback from pharmacists in Brazil, with a non-product infomercial providing a welcome distraction to queuing customers.
Winner: ‘Most Valuable HCP Initiative’
Roche; Modelo de Atención Integral en Cancer de Mama
While most entries in the patient services category coalesced around education, the diversity in service innovation for HCPs was quite interesting. BMS entered a simple app that helps HCPs quickly calculate TTR, a quality measure of anticoagulation therapy, which also stores patient information for easy review. Janssen took the step of creating a physical HCP community to share best-practice in HIV treatments, creating an annual forum, supported by travel scholarships to bring together a multi-disciplinary community.
Putting together a sophisticated model of disease management, Baxter actually built an integrated model to assist patients through the whole treatment cycle of diabetes care. Notably, this was carefully constructed to also address the needs of marginalized populations, such as prisoners, elderly, children, drug users and also adolescents.
Winner: Customer Innovator Award
Federico Santelmo, Platform Lead, Customer Programs department, Pfizer
Responding to local needs, Federico Santelmo led the way in creating an education platform for HCPs in Venezuela – an interesting example of a non-product focused initiative.
HCPs have suffered in recent years due to market constraints which have made it exceedingly difficult, and expensive to import medical education materials. The professional community was becoming marginalized and isolated from progression within medicine, which had clear negative implications for their patients.
Pfizer painstakingly collected tens of thousands of relevant medical journals and created an e-library that was completely free for use to the HCP community. In addition to serials of leading medical journals, the content was a mix of webinars and profession news; more than 4,000 HCPs have registered for the service to date.
Key to identifying where to add value, was being able to look beyond the initial benefits to the Pfizer’s portfolio needs, Santelmo noted, “Understanding customer needs first and then planning strategies and solutions accordingly. Separating ourselves from what the brand wants in order to get closer to what the customer wants, and that way embrace a customer focus to our work."
Winner: Lifetime Value Achievement
Joaquín Mould Quevedo – Global Health Economics & Outcomes Research Project Leader – Specialty Care, Bayer
Joaquín Mould Quevedo was celebrated for a diverse global career that has seen him make significant contributions to the advancement of evidence-based healthcare, in both professional and academic circles. Throughout his career he has been a prolific writer, publishing more than 60 articles in peer-reviewed journals, while finding time to conduct editorial responsibilities at Pharmaeconomics, Value in Health and Value in Health Regional Issues. Quevedo was also globetrotter as a student and a professional; he completed his PhD in Alicante, Spain, before pursuing an MBA at the Sorbonne in Paris.
In his first industry role at Pfizer, he contributed to the market access of over 30 products into the national formulary, while founding Latin America’s first branch of ISPOR in Mexico in 2006. Moving into a regional role at HQ in New York, Quevedo managed a portfolio of over $2 billion, successfully positioning for access in 15 countries in Latin America. After four years in this function, he moved to join Bayer Healthcare as the Global HEOR Project Leader for speciality medicine.
The interesting part of our work globally is that we have a vantage point from which to identify trends as they spread from region to region, both in the industry at large and within individual company cultures. Novartis also won the ‘Most Valuable Patient Initiative or Service’ category at the eyeforpharma Philadelphia awards, a sister ceremony celebrating innovators in North America, with a project that also displayed a sophisticated approach to increasing adherence. There were large differences between the two initiatives (you can read more about the other entry here), both in terms of the technology involved and the channels used to deliver education, yet they both displayed impressive results.
This really underlined the importance of tailoring approaches around local capabilities and context. While there is always pressure to take success and rush to scale, it was clear from our winners, that the secret ingredient is to ensure that you are designing service in response to a local need, not a global challenge.
To view more information on the finalists, click here.
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