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Physicians Interactive Becomes Aptus Health, Offering a Global Digital Health Engagement Solution
To better reflect its role as a partner for global digital health engagement, Physicians Interactive recently announced it is now Aptus Health. The change comes as the company extends into new geographic markets and expands its offerings to address a growing need for integrated digital health engagement strategies aimed at both healthcare professionals and consumers.
The new brand builds on Physicians Interactive’s years of success helping life sciences engage targets in integrated campaigns that empower better decisions and drive business results.
“Over the years, we’ve evolved our capabilities to help our clients achieve a wide range of digital health engagement goals across a wide range of populations—the name Physicians Interactive no longer tells the whole story,” said Joseph Caso, Chief Executive Officer at Aptus Health. “Our industry is facing increasing complexity, with commercial models, payment models, and care delivery models all experiencing a transformation. These changes demand that companies re-evaluate how they engage their target healthcare professionals and consumers to achieve their respective business objectives. With the international talent and expertise we’ve developed in-house, Aptus Health is the partner to guide them.”
The company offers an end-to-end solution—including strategy, solution design, customer segmenting, advertising, and actionable analytics—for engaging both healthcare professionals and consumers in personalized, relevant digital content. Aptus Health’s clients have access to the world’s largest healthcare professional community, Univadis, as well as to the leading healthcare consumer communities and mobile apps through its MedHelp division.
“Aptus Health is not just a new name – it’s a new way of supporting our clients with the depth of knowledge, breadth of vision, and proven solutions needed to transform current models and take health engagement forward,” said Brian Robinson, Chief Marketing and Strategy Officer at Aptus Health. “With our decades of collective intelligence in health engagement and our digital and mobile channel expertise, we are uniquely positioned to serve as a global partner to our clients– offering insight-driven design, development, and deployment of innovative digital solutions that empower people to make better decisions and drive our clients’ business results.”
DOCTORS EMBRACING DIGITAL TECHNOLOGY - BUT ARE RELUCTANT TO PRESCRIBE APPS AND WEARABLES FOR PATIENTS
Face-to-face communication still biggest influence on prescribing behaviour, says new report
Digital technology is bringing healthcare professionals and patients closer together – but face-to-face information from peers, KOLs and rep visits remain the biggest influencers on prescribing behaviour – that is one of the key findings of a global online survey of healthcare professionals published by market research agency Cello Health Insight.
The firm’s second annual Digital Health Debate report also reveals that 62% of doctors say that patients often attend surgery with a self-diagnosis from web research, with 40% saying that patients often specifically request named prescriptions from online research – although there is significant geographical variation in this figure, with the figure rising to 65% in Italy and 45% in the US, whilst the UK sits lower than the global average at 28%.
The report, which looks in detail at how doctors use digital technology, shows that 77% regularly use their smartphones at work for professional purposes.The figure for the US is 73%, in the UK 82%.
However, despite embracing digital technology themselves, only 36% of doctors are likely to recommend a mobile health app to patients in the future, and just one in ten doctors globally own a fitness band – with only half of those using it regularly at work.
Paul Mannu, director at Cello Health Insight, said, “What is really interesting about this study is that it shows that healthcare professionals are using digital technology widely, but that when it comes to what influences them to make prescribing decisions, personal interaction, especially with peers, is still more important.
“Digital technology is, however, bringing doctors and patients closer together: it is interesting that medical professionals are as likely to use websites designed with patients in mind as they are those aimed solely at doctors.”
“Doctor, I’ve done my own diagnosis and know what medication I need”
Patients clearly have a thirst for medical knowledge, and the trend for researching – and identifying – one’s own diagnosis shows no sign of abating.
·69% of doctors said that their patients look up their condition prior to a consultation, rising to 90% in Brazil, and 72% in the US and UK.
·62% of doctors agreed that patients often come to them with a diagnosis they want to discuss having researched online.This figure rises to 87% in Brazil, 68% in the US and 63% in the UK.
·40% said that patients often specifically ask for a named prescription having diagnosed themselves online – a 4% increase from when the same question was asked in 2014.In Italy the figure is 65%, in the US 45%, whilst in the UK it is lower than average at 28%.
What’s App, Doc?Only a third of doctors recommend mobile apps
Despite 41% of doctors agreeing that Mobile Apps could be a ‘game changer’, globally just 36% said they are likely to recommend a Mobile Health App to their patients, with the biggest barrier being the fact that not all patient have smartphones (and therefore the need for a universal system).
·In the UK 33% are likely to recommend a Mobile Health App to patients in the future.In the US, the figure is 43%.
·The main reasons for recommending Mobile Health App use were: Diet and Weight Loss (70%), General Health and Fitness activity (65%), Health Monitoring (53%), Smoking Cessation (49%), and Compliance (45%).
·The biggest barriers to recommendation of wearable tech and Mobile Health Apps were: not all patients have smartphones (28%), possible inconsistent use of the app, leading to incomplete data (14%), integration with existing health electronic management systems (11%) and doctors not having the time or necessary skills to understand the data (10%).
Where are the wearables?
Ownership of fitness tracking bands amongst doctors globally is just 9% (although 15% in the US) and 5% say they regularly wear a fitness tracking band while at work (11% in the US, 5% in the UK).36% of doctors say they are likely to recommend a wearable technology device to patients in the future, although there are significant geographical variations in this figure (US 43%, UK 33%, highest in Brazil 67%).
Paul Mannu commented, “Arguably wearable devices offer huge potential to individual health monitoring and management. Yet despite the fact that wearable devices can track and record numerous areas of an individual’s health – from heart rate to weight loss, exercise frequency and intensity to glucose levels - it is mobile health apps where the medicalprofession sees more opportunity to deliver better health outcomes in the near future.
“This is certainly borne out by the evidence: globally almost twice as many doctors own a fitness tracking band as use it regularly at work, and if they aren’t doing it and leading by example, it’s unlikely they would expect - or indeed recommend - their patients to do so.”
Face-to-face still the biggest influence
Information received face-to-face from peers, KOLs, pharma sales representatives and sponsored meetings/conferences were found to be the most trusted channels of communication, and also those with the most influence on a decision to prescribe.
“The amount doctors are using digital technology, and the importance they attach to it as a way of engaging with patients, is definitely growing year on year,” said Paul Mannu.“But pharma cannot view such channels as a panacea; the basics of engaging on a personal basis with doctors remains a crucial part of winning their trust and influencing prescribing decisions.
“The key for the industry is to use insights such as those provided by the Digital Health Debate report to understand the diversity of doctors around the world, and then adopt relevant strategies to maximise return by talking to customers on the channels and in the way that ultimately encourage your customers to become your advocates.”
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Note to editors
1,040 interviews were conducted across a range of different physician types and eight markets from 10th to 31st July 2015. The markets covered: the US, the UK, France, Germany, Spain, Italy, China and Brazil.
The interviews were 15 minutes in length and conducted online with panel provider M3 Global Research. All respondents were verified as being healthcare professionals. The data is un-weighted.
Formerly Insight Research Group, Cello Health Insight is the global marketing research arm of Cello Health, with offices in London, New York, Chicago and Switzerland
Cello Health was launched in March 2014, bringing together Cello Group’s health-orientated agencies to create a new offer for clients in the healthcare sector.
Cello Health consists of three distinct capabilities:
Cello Health Insight: global marketing research and customer insight
Cello Health Consulting: strategic consultancy
Cello Health Communications: evidence and engagement
In May 2014, healthcare communications agency iS Health Group, based in the UK, joined Cello Health; in December 2014, San Francisco based market research company Promedica also became part of Cello Health.
Synergy Vision, the London-based medical communications agency, was awarded the Corporate Award at the Women of the Future Awards ceremony, which took place at the London Hilton Hotel on Park Lane last night. Winning this prestigious award is great recognition of how the organization has built a diverse workforce in terms of experience, expertise and background.
Jill Daws, Senior Account Director at Synergy Vision, said: “We are delighted to win this prestigious award, which reflects our continued commitment to the promotion of diversity within the workplace, and particularly within a sector which is typically stereotyped as being male dominated.”
The Awards, now in their 10th year, celebrate rising talent across 11 categories, including business, culture, media and many more. Synergy Vision faced stiff competition for the Corporate Award from larger multinational organizations including Shell, Olswang, Accenture and Unilever; it triumphed because of its ongoing dedication to nurturing the next generation of talent and furthering the careers of young women in the medical communications industry.
The judges were impressed by Synergy Vision’s desire to see its employees become successful, as well as its inspiring and innovative approach to recruiting and promoting women at entry level through to middle leadership and senior positions. They also added that the organization “has much that it can teach the corporate sector about how a professional culture, policies and practice can help people to flourish in a way that is both good for business and for the employees”.
Eileen Gallagher, Director at Synergy Vision, said: “We have always placed a lot of importance on nurturing the career of all our young employees, men and women alike. We have worked hard to put a range of policies in place, such as an extensive programme for new recruits, and flexible working policies to help new mothers return to work. We are extremely proud to win this award and look forward to further collaboration with the Women of the Future network”.
Synergy Vision was founded over eight years ago by Ffyona Dawber, an experienced pharmaceutical clinical development specialist, to fill a gap in the market ? for an agency that could relate to the challenges faced by pharmaceutical clients and deliver to the highest standard. Since then, Synergy Vision has gone from strength to strength, and has become a trusted partner to a number of clients in the pharmaceutical industry. With an impressive growth from two to 30 people over eight years, the company is still growing and planning further expansion.
Physicians Interactive Advances Global Health Digital Engagement by Acquiring UnivadisAuthoritative Medical Content Platform Combined with Deep Digital Expertise Offers Greater Opportunities to Engage Healthcare Professionals and Improve Outcomes READING,...
Physicians Interactive Advances Global Health Digital Engagement by Acquiring Univadis
Physicians Interactive Advances Global Health Digital Engagement by Acquiring Univadis
Authoritative Medical Content Platform Combined with Deep Digital Expertise Offers Greater Opportunities to Engage Healthcare Professionals and Improve Outcomes
READING, Mass. – Oct. 21, 2015 – Physicians Interactive® (PI) announced today the launch of its recently acquired Univadis platform, the world’s largest healthcare professional (HCP) network.
Univadis, previously a wholly-owned subsidiary of Merck (known as MSD outside of the U.S. and Canada), has an active membership of more than 3 million HCPs in over 20 languages, across 63 specialties and in more than 90 countries. Univadis provides a comprehensive suite of clinically relevant resources for HCPs, including medical news, conference reports, references, textbooks and online education modules.
The Univadis platform will now operate as part of Physicians Interactive (a wholly-owned subsidiary of Merck, operating independently from branded pharmaceutical and vaccine operations), aligning with the company’s suite of HCP-facing properties to deliver a seamless engagement experience – both for HCP members seeking credible medical content and for the life sciences companies, payors, and providers who leverage these digital properties to drive education and awareness of new medical and digital innovations aimed at improving health outcomes.
“Adding Univadis to the Physicians Interactive brand underscores our mission to advance health engagement across the entire spectrum, as well as across the globe,” said Donato Tramuto, Chairman and CEO of Physicians Interactive. “There is a transformation underway in healthcare, one that requires a fresh, integrated approach grounded in proven digital strategies. With the expanded reach and rich medical content this acquisition offers, we are even better positioned to provide the end-to-end solutions our commercial partners need to deeply engage healthcare professionals – resulting in greater awareness and better health outcomes.”
This acquisition also positions PI as a global digital partner for its clients looking to further engage health care professionals through digital channels – offering centrally managed, multinational campaigns featuring localized content. Today these international markets include France, Spain, Italy, the United Kingdom and the United States; continued expansion into dozens of markets around the world is planned over the next three years.
About Physicians Interactive
Physicians Interactive engages and empowers consumers and healthcare professionals with instant access to content, solutions and data to improve health outcomes. The company provides payors, retailers and life science companies with sophisticated digital engagement solutions to reach, message, educate and change behaviors.
Physicians Interactive is a wholly-owned subsidiary of Merck & Co., Inc., Kenilworth, N.J., USA (known outside the U.S. and Canada as MSD). With its own independent employees, editorial process, business and financial operations, and governance, PI maintains its information and the confidentiality of its customers’ information independent from its parent company. More information can be found at www.PhysiciansInteractive.com.
Merck is a global healthcare leader working to help the world be well. Merck is known as MSD outside the United States and Canada. Through our prescription medicines, vaccines, biologic therapies and animal health products, we work with customers and operate in more than 140 countries to deliver innovative health solutions. We also demonstrate our commitment to increasing access to healthcare through far-reaching policies, programs and partnerships. For more information, visit www.merck.com and connect with us on Twitter,Facebook and YouTube.
Forward-Looking Statement of Merck & Co., Inc., Kenilworth, N.J., USA
This news release of Merck & Co., Inc., Kenilworth, N.J., USA (the “company”) includes “forward-looking statements” within the meaning of the safe harbor provisions of the U.S. Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. These statements are based upon the current beliefs and expectations of the company’s management and are subject to significant risks and uncertainties. If underlying assumptions prove inaccurate or risks or uncertainties materialize, actual results may differ materially from those set forth in the forward-looking statements.
Risks and uncertainties include but are not limited to, general industry conditions and competition; general economic factors, including interest rate and currency exchange rate fluctuations; the impact of pharmaceutical industry regulation and health care legislation in the United States and internationally; global trends toward health care cost containment; technological advances, new products and patents attained by competitors; challenges inherent in new product development, including obtaining regulatory approval; the company’s ability to accurately predict future market conditions; manufacturing difficulties or delays; financial instability of international economies and sovereign risk; dependence on the effectiveness of the company’s patents and other protections for innovative products; and the exposure to litigation, including patent litigation, and/or regulatory actions.
The company undertakes no obligation to publicly update any forward-looking statement, whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise. Additional factors that could cause results to differ materially from those described in the forward-looking statements can be found in the company’s 2014 Annual Report on Form 10-K and the company’s other filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) available at the SEC’s Internet site (www.sec.gov).
Synergy Vision expands global presence to meet demand in the Asia-Pacific region
UK-based Synergy Vision opens a new office in Sydney, Australia, to meet the demands of their clients across the Asia-Pacific region.
With the rapidly expanding pharmaceutical sector in the Asia-Pacific region, the new office will provide clients in this region with local knowledge, combined with the worldwide skills and resources of their established offices.
Synergy Vision is an award-winning medical communications agency that believes in developing and delivering medical communications programmes that make a difference to healthcare professionals and patients. The company was founded over eight years ago and is enjoying continued growth, with offices worldwide and a growing global team.
Corinne Whitehead, Account Director, who has been with Synergy Vision for seven years, is heading up the Asia Pacific office. Prior to joining Synergy Vision, Corinne worked in a wide range of sectors for the pharmaceutical, banking and IT industries. Corinne’s wealth of experience in global pharmaceutical compliance and understanding of local regulations will be invaluable to clients in this region.
The opening of the Asia-Pacific office is part of an ongoing expansion programme. Synergy Vision now has offices in London, Dublin and Sydney, and an alliance with BoomCom, based in Colorado, USA. This increasing worldwide presence will provide clients with seamless communications strategy and programme implementation across Europe, the Americas and the Asia-Pacific region.
Ffyona Dawber, Managing Director, comments on the latest expansion, “The new office in Sydney enhances our commitment to provide clients with unparalleled global medical communications. It is another step towards delivering a truly global reach, enabling us to meet the local needs of our clients around the world.”