Whitepaper: how can technology improve patient outcomes?

White paper: how technology can improve patient outcomes

Agnitio brought together delegates from AstraZeneca, UCB, Eli Lilly, Sanofi, Celesio, Diabetes UK, and Imperial College Health Partners, to brainstorm needs and parameters for using digital technology to improve patient outcomes.

Digital technology – The doctor's friend or foe?

Imagine if every doctor was delighted that their patients were researching online – confident that the internet and other digital media were providing the right information, enabling treatment adherence, and encouraging lifestyle changes.

Is that scenario possible? Could it ever become a reality?

Unfortunately, right now there’s every reason to believe that it won’t. Search the internet on any medical condition to see a deluge of information that will likely contradict and confuse as much as inform and enable – causing more problems for healthcare professionals.

 

The right uses for technology in Healthcare

Agnitio, working together with CreateHealth, brought together delegates
from AstraZeneca, UCB, Eli-Lilly, Sanofi, Celesio, and Diabetes UK to explore
how digital technology can be better applied to healthcare, using diabetes
as a focus area. The following captures how the group sees both the
practical and creative uses for digital to benefit all stakeholders: patients,
healthcare professionals and the industry.

What can be done?

 
1 Connecting patients to industry knowledge

Knowledge silos in pharma can be broken down and a new spirit of collaboration should transfer the abundance of clinical knowledge and insights into easily accessible impartial online content. Often the information is there but it is not being effectively distributed. Technology can help ensure that the right information reaches the right person in the right way.
 

Pharma is well-placed to provide
‘drug as a service’
– meaning that
the industry’s wealth of clinical
knowledge and research data are
transformed into personalized,
relevant, and timely information
to empower a patient through
treatment.

Lars Diemer
Agnitio
 

2 Increasing the potential for self- management

A general trend in healthcare is for patients to take a more active part in
their own treatment. This is another area where information technology
can make a real difference – ensuring that patients are not only correctly
informed so that they can make the right decisions but also guided
throughout their treatment. Technology can also better connect patients
with healthcare professionals for both support and treatment feedback.
 

Technology-enabled care can
help to improve people’s ability
to self-manage their health
and wellbeing,
alert healthcare
professionals to changes in
their condition and support
medication adherence.

Laura Southall
Celesio
 

3 Monitoring patient success

Increasingly, digital solutions, which analyze data in real time, are helping healthcare professionals understand how a patient is faring and how to improve outcomes. For example, the current costs of diabetes are $825 billion worldwide, with the bulk caused by treating diabetes-related complications such as cardiovascular disease, kidney failure, neuropathy, feet ulcers and amputation. Many complications are preventable with good diabetes management.
 

There is a growing but strong
evidence base confirming
digital support, provided in a
personalised and timely way,

can improve outcomes and
reduce complications.

Professor Mike Trenell
National Institute of Health Research
Laboratory (NIHR) NHS

 

4 Providing HCPs with more treatment tools

Digital technology can be more than a way of providing information; it can actually become part of the treatment regime – giving new tools to healthcare professionals.
 

In the future, ‘social prescribing’
willbecome part of a treatment
package.
HCPs could routinely
refer patients to websites or apps
to support lifestyle changes that
will improve their health and
wellbeing.

Professor Mike Trenell
National Institute of Health Research
Laboratory (NIHR) NHS

 

The Need For Collaboration

More effective use of digital technologies would not only improve patient health outcomes, but also add value for healthcare authorities, enabling more cost-effective use of budgets and resources. But, to get the benefits, there has to be an openness to new ways of working for everyone involved. Industry, academia, and healthcare professionals need to come together and collaborate to realize the potential.
 

Collaboration isn’t just between
companies,
but working in an open
and collaborative way with
patients, doctors, payers, nurses
and carers. The long lasting impact
is trust between stakeholders and
ultimately the improvement of
patient outcomes.

Adam Higgins
AstraZeneca
 

Pharma is increasingly expected to not just develop new drugs, but also support these treatments at the point of care – a process that has now started with increasing industry focus on patient-centricity.

 

The pharma industry isn’t shy of
making the needed investments
in R&D and innovation. But to
capitalize on digital health they
need to take a collaborative
stance from the outset.

John Grumitt
Diabetes UK
 
None of this will be easy for the simple reason that people are unused to working in this way. As the traditional domains shift, mutual understanding and trust become ever more important. All parties will need to be open to new ways of working and willing to support – and take part in – different stakeholder constellations.
 

Collaborations in healthcare are
rarely simple, but the value they
offer to improve outcomes vastly
outweighs the effort.

Adam Higgins
AstraZeneca
 
Yet there’s no better time to explore the potential of applying digital
technologies to healthcare. The technology is now available that can make
a real difference. The industry recognizes that it should – and can do more
– to support its innovations at the point of care. Patients want to be more
involved in their treatment and healthcare professionals are keen to help
them. And everyone wants to improve treatment outcomes – a foundation
which to build the necessary collaborations to make it happen.
 

Digital technology is there to be
exploited,
to find the best means
possible of providing easily
accessible health education and
healthcare. HCPs should be
empowered to select and
present the right information for
patients to access at point of care.

Lars Diemer
Agnitio

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