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IT & Communication

with patients and the integration of patient health records. Life sciences companies can

use Health 2.0 as a key compo- nent of their outreach. Health 2.0 provides an opportunity to address compliance and persistency issues, bringing together key stakeholders faster and at a lower cost, and track- ing positive outcomes for drugs using real-world data. Social media tools can improve patient health monitoring by increasing patient involvement, as compared to limit- ed monitoring through routine physician visits. While the end result is improved patient health, the benefits to improved disease management extend to physicians and payers. Examples of Health 2.0 tools

to improve disease management include:

Diagnostic tools (e.g., iPhone apps) Support communities (social networks) E-consultations (remote health diagnoses) Online health stats monitoring (statistical health tracking) Health reminders (notifications to help patient compliance) Real-world outcomes research (shared treatment and symptom

information via Patient Support Networks) For instance, diabetes patients

use iPhone apps like Glucose Buddy and WaveSense Diabetes Manager that allow patients to log, review, and share their blood glucose data with their physicians.

Penetrating New Markets Niche Target Populations As life sciences companies shift their development towards products for niche markets, Health 2.0 can help them align those drugs to the smaller target populations. Social media can increase access and shorten the time to reach their targets, through more directed marketing communication to physicians, patients and payers. Shifting customer practices are also leading to other potential opportuni- ties:

Increasing patient self-education, particularly using online sources, illustrates the need for life sciences companies to participate in active outreach. Outcome-based pricing and chang- es in formulary approval proc- esses demonstrate the need for life sciences companies to provide additional scientific evidence and health outcomes data.

Developing Countries Developing countries offer new markets for life sciences companies, and the strong mobile penetration in these countries can be leveraged to access patients and accelerate sales. SMS-based (text) technolo- gies can improve reach and can help to increase patient compliance with medications. In addition to SMS, Health 2.0 tools offer lower-cost methods

of communication that can be deliv- ered to smaller target populations (see Figure 6 ).8 According to Terry Kramer, strategy

director at British operator Vodafone, “There are 2.2 billion mobile phones in the developing world, 305 million computers but only 11 million hospi- tal beds.”9

Through the use of mobile

technologies, life sciences companies can provide value-added healthcare services and increase their customer base.

Strengthening Brand Equity Patients and physicians are demand- ing greater transparency, and life sciences companies can provide that while also improving their brand image through social media. KOLs and POLs have broader audiences online than ever before. Establishing two-way 25

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