Pharma Looks Forward: How Innovations and Trends Predict the Industry’s Future

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The distraction of the sun and fun summer activities shouldn’t detract from Pharma’s future-forward actions. The evidence is clear and organizations are forging a new path based on digital technology’s transformative power. With your glass of crisp Chardonnay in hand, discover how innovative apps, organ chips (no, not the kind you eat), mobile health and telemedicine are looking to become the new beacons in healthcare. We’ll also uncover one of the clearest ways to identify Pharma trends. When the money is doing the talking, you know where innovation is heading. This adage is true with Pharma. Organizations continue to invest heavily in digital marketing and sales and digital healthcare, in general.

1. New App Tracks the Flu and Allergies Coming For You Only Blocks Away

By Patrick Kulp, published on Mashable

Innovative app combines data, advertising and marketing

Johnson & Johnson are breaking healthcare barriers with its new HEALTHYDAY app. The algorithm combines the kind of expertise people are looking for when they search for symptoms via Google land WebMD, but it’s smarter. Combining data from local doctor’s offices, social media mentions, Google searches and user data (from app users), the app offers tips and suggestions for dealing with the flu and allergy season, for example. It also gently suggests branded products that alleviate symptoms. This is just one example of a forward-thinking healthcare company employing the power of big data and digital marketing.

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2. Towards a Body-on-a-chip

Published on The Economist

Drug testing advancements could replace animal testing

Animal lovers will rejoice at the news of a body chip that could replace animal testing in the future. It’s also an illustration of how Pharma companies are innovating. It’s out with the old and in with the new, as organizations are doing away with the old standard of testing new drugs on cultures in dishes – the required avenue for clinical drug testing trials and before animal testing can begin. Several companies are banking on the new method of using a digital device similar in smartphone size to replicate organs and the impact on which drugs have. The prediction is that the digital methodology will better replicate human function, more so than animals can. With the data gleaned from the “organ chips,” Pharma hopes to drive improved drug testing.

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3. The Two Important Ways Digital Health Is Impacting Pharma in 2015

By Alex Butler, published on The EarthWorks

Digital health directly impacting Pharma

Redefining real-world data and improving communication between healthcare professionals and Pharma companies are two ways that digital health has changed Pharma in general. It now appears that beyond-the-pill initiatives – what were once a pipedream – are becoming a reality, driven by new digital health standards. Now, Pharma can see a new archetype of providing end-to-end service for patients, proving that digital technology is having a significant clinical effect. Predictions for the future include regulations that mandate end-to-end service delivery.

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4. How Important Will mHealth be To Pharma?

By Ed Miseta, published on Clinical Leader

New possibilities emerge from mHealth

Mobile health, or mHealth, is set to have just as significant impact on Pharma as other industries. Far from a quickly passing trend, experts believe mHealth is positioned to become a beacon to Pharma’s way of doing business, and will centralize patient care. As evidence, the number of Android and iOS mHealth apps in 2014 was more than 100,000. In the past two and a half years, just 5,000 of these apps earned $1 million or more in revenue. By 2017, experts predict mHealth spending will be in the 10s of billions. The push to connect with patients via mobile health is directly motivated by the desire to connect with audiences (physicians, patients, caregivers and Pharmacists), and promote education and compliance – and as a result, patient outcomes.

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5. A New Era For Pharmaceuticals: New Commercial Models

By Rick Edmunds, Rolf Fricker, and Stephan Danner, published on Forbes

Financial investment shows digital key to marketing and sales innovation

The old model of in-person sales is being replaced, driven by the increasingly complex marketplace, new regulations, and the greater costs and adjustment of models of operations. As a result, new sales and marketing tactics are necessary, powered by the drive to employ a personal selling model and provide high value to customers/patients. Pharma companies are testing digital solutions as the new standard for marketing and sales; however, no one company is banking its future on digital. It remains to be seen how far Pharma can successfully deploy better healthcare outcomes for patients. However, organizations continue to invest heavily in digital technologies – a key indicator of its importance and future.

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6. Walgreens Joins the Ranks of Telemedicine Providers

By Eric Wicklund, published on mHealthNews

Powerful healthcare forces combine to drive telemedicine’s future

Walgreens, the largest drugstore chain in the U.S., is pushing its new mobile telemedicine platform in 2015. The company is banking on the telehealth solution to drive better patient outcomes. Limiting the service to specific conditions, the digital healthcare platform is set for success, backed by America’s largest healthcare insurance company who is now covering the virtual visits. What was once a service limited to only the wealthy, telemedicine may be the new pattern for healthcare in the future, decreasing patient care costs and increasing access to quality care.

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