Last week I did a presentation alongside Kerri Morrone in a conference aimed at people from the pharmaceutical industry. We tried to get three main points in the presentation:
1) We’re people first: not far from the concept of “Call Me Patient, Not Consumer” I wrote about a few months ago.
2) Trust is key in this space (arguably in all spaces) and it works both ways. An important step to build trust is to start humanizing pharma more. Pharma can humanize itself more in many ways: starting with putting a name and a face to the building, the company name and the stock; thinking of the patient as people (as just mentioned).
We may not be getting hit by a hurricane every day but the cost of health care and the barriers to access to care make it harder and harder for people with chronic conditions to get the care they need. Pharma should find creative ways to emulate efforts like P&G’s “Loads of Hope” initiative to help Katrina victims with their laundry after the hurricane – so many people need help today.
Can you make patient assistance programs easier to find? Easier to enter? Broader? Things like these could go a long way to help build up trust from people towards pharma. A place to start may be to mine your organization for stories of people working in pharma because they were driven from within by a personal connection to a particular condition.
3) Adverse Event data is a good thing: Adverse events (AE) seem to be the elephant in the room most pharmaceutical companies are running away from when it comes down to working with online communities and patient blogs. Not engaging patients may save pharma the “trouble” of dealing with AE but it also results in missing opportunities for dialog.
Here is the presentation: