Changes to pharma and healthcare in 2019

Pharmafield | January 01, 2019

Continuing funding shortages, Brexit uncertainty, regulator moves and regulation reforms: there is no shortage of change facing the sector in 2019. We asked the industry’s trade associations about the biggest challenges to tackle and most exciting opportunities to embrace in the year ahead. What does 2019 have in store for pharma and healthcare? Managing the health problems associated with an ageing population on an ever-tightening NHS budget will continue to challenge the sector in 2019. But according to the Association of British HealthTech Industries (ABHI), the health service can rise to the occasion by utilising technology.

Spotlight

Dr. Paul Stoffels, our Chief Scientific Officer, co-authored an op-ed in The Guardian with Dr. Peter Piot, Director of the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine, on the importance of staying focused on finding vaccines and therapies to prevent another Ebola epidemic. Just recently, the World Health Organization declared Sierra Leone officially Ebola-free for the first time in a year but new cases continue to emerge in West Africa, including in Liberia and Guinea.


Other News
FUTURE OF HEALTHCARE

Change Healthcare and Optum Extend Merger Agreement

Optum | April 06, 2022

Optum, a diversified health services company, and Change Healthcare a health care technology leader, have agreed to extend their merger agreement to December 31, 2022. “The extended agreement reflects our firm belief in the potential of our combination to improve health care, and in our commitment to contesting the meritless legal challenge to this merger.” In a joint statement, the companies Change Healthcare and Optum share a vision for achieving a simpler, more intelligent and adaptive health system for patients, payers and providers. The combination of Optum and Change Healthcare will connect and simplify the core clinical, administrative and payment processes health care providers and payers depend on to serve patients. Increasing efficiency and reducing friction will benefit the entire health system, resulting in lower costs and a better experience for all stakeholders. Change Healthcare and Optum will detail the benefits of this combination at a two-week trial scheduled to begin on August 1. The U.S. Department of Justice’s attempt to block the combination is without merit and serves only to delay improving the experience and outcomes for all participants in the health system. As part of the extension, Optum will pay a $650 million fee to Change Healthcare in the event the merger is unable to be completed because of the court’s decision. Change Healthcare will pay a special cash dividend of $2.00 per share to its shareholders at or about the time of the closing. About Optum Optum is a leading information and technology-enabled health services business dedicated to helping make the health system work better for everyone. With more than 190,000 people worldwide, Optum delivers intelligent, integrated solutions that help to modernize the health system and improve overall population health. Optum is part of UnitedHealth Group. About Change Healthcare Change Healthcare is a leading healthcare technology company focused on insights, innovation, and accelerating the transformation of the U.S. healthcare system through the power of the Change Healthcare Platform. We provide data and analytics-driven solutions to improve clinical, financial, administrative, and patient-engagement outcomes in the U.S. healthcare system.

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DIGITAL HEALTHCARE

Revibe Technologies Announces Clinical Development Updates for its Investigational FokusRx Prescription Digital Therapy for the Treatment of ADHD

Revibe technologies | February 09, 2022

Revibe technologies, a commercial-stage digital therapeutics company, announced today the positive results of their feasibility study examining the efficacy of FokusRx in school aged children with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD). FokusRx is an investigational SaMD (Software as a Medical Device) that has the potential to provide a new nonpharmacologic approach to treating attention, focus and hyperactivity deficits associated with ADHD, and other mental health conditions. ADHD is one of the most commonly diagnosed and increasingly prevalent mental health disorders in children and adolescents.Inthe United States, 6.1 million children aged 2-17 years have been diagnosed with ADHD. Approximately 50% of families stop using prescription drug treatments for ADHD within a year.Over 30% of parents refuse pharmacologic treatment for their children with ADHD. In this, single-arm multi-rater feasibility study, parents (n= 38) and teachers (n= 26) rated youth aged 8-12 years with a parent-reported diagnosis of ADHD. Youth were attending in-person classroom learning and not taking medication for their ADHD. The study included a number of outcome measures including the ADHD-RS-5 (Home and School versions), Conners 4 – short version, Weiss Functional Impairment Rating Scale-Parent Form (WFIRS-P), and the Academic Performance Rating Scale (APRS). To be included in the analyses, youth had to have worn the Revibe Connect wearable device to school Monday to Friday for a at least three days per week or a minimum of 15 days total for a period of four weeks. "We are pleased that the feasibility study has proven to be a successful exercise that de-risks our upcoming randomized sham-controlled pivotal trial. The moderate to large effect sizes observed and change scores that exceed standards for minimally important (clinically significant) differences, provide encouraging preliminary evidence supporting the efficacy of our intervention", says Dr.Lindsay Ayearst, Chief Scientific Officer of Revibe. Revibe's Scientific and Medical Advisory Board member, Dr.Margaret Weiss, Director of Clinical Research in Child Psychiatry at Cambridge Health Alliance, stated, "These results are consistent across both symptoms and functioning, and across informants.They would translate into clinically significant change. Most impressive is the demonstration of an effect on academic performance." "The data from the classroom feasibility study suggests FokusRx can effectively and safely improve ADHD symptoms and functioning in school-aged children. It is our intention that FokusRx will provide kids and parents another option to help them succeed and reach their full potential. We are excited to begin designing our pivotal trial planned for the fall." Joseph Koziak, Chief Executive Officer of Revibe About FokusRx FokusRx is an investigational SaMD designed to provide a new nonpharmacologic approach to treating symptoms and impairment associated with ADHD. The FokusRx software is embedded within a dedicated smart watch to act as a digital therapeutic wearable. About Revibe Technologies Revibe Technologies is passionate about leveraging technology to help children and adults with focus and attention problems overcome obstacles in order to succeed in life. Revibe Technologies hopes to be a resource for students, parents, teachers, schools, and clinicians.

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HEALTH TECHNOLOGY

athenahealth Expands Mobile EHR Voice Capabilities for Healthcare Providers

athenahealth, Inc. | June 29, 2022

athenahealth, Inc., a leading provider of network-enabled software and services for medical groups and health systems nationwide, announced the release of athenaOne® Voice Assistant Powered by Nuance®, a mobile-embedded, voice-driven digital companion that streamlines information retrieval and enables hands-free completion of meaningful clinical tasks for healthcare providers using athenahealth’s electronic health records (EHR) solution. Leveraging the power of their voice and iOS-based mobile device, clinicians can spend less time on the computer and more time interacting with patients. Voice Assistant is a natural command-based, virtual assistant developed and built by athenahealth and powered by Nuance's Dragon Medical technology. Voice Assistant is available for use with the award-winning athenaOne mobile app and athenaOne® Dictation Powered by Nuance®, which allows clinicians to dictate patient documentation naturally and accurately. Together, athenahealth’s voice-enabled solutions help clinicians improve documentation accuracy, save time, and provide a better patient experience. According to a recent survey by athenahealth, 92% of physicians surveyed report one or more issues cause them to feel burned out on a regular basis with the leading cause of regular burnout being excessive documentation requirements. However, numerous clinicians using Voice Assistant have experienced significant documentation time savings, thus allowing them to reallocate their time to other high-priority tasks. “I started using Voice Assistant because I’m curious about tech and AI, and I wanted to see if it would help me be more productive. Because I can so easily document anywhere, anytime, I’ve found it to be very useful and convenient, and it helps me make better use of my time. I wouldn’t want to work without it now.” Dr. Terence M. Grogan, DO, FAAFP, Grogan Family Medicine Using simple, intuitive voice commands, clinicians using Voice Assistant can document exams, create draft orders, retrieve clinical information, and review their schedule to accelerate tasks and save valuable time. As an AI-backed technology, Voice Assistant will become even smarter and more efficient with widespread use, and athenahealth will continue to expand the number of available commands and introduce new use cases. “We are delighted to expand our provider mobile app capabilities with Voice Assistant as we continue to transform the provider and patient experience,” said Paul Brient, chief product officer for athenahealth. “Clinicians should be able to experience technology at work just like they do in their everyday lives, and Voice Assistant brings us one step closer to that.” Brient added that with provider burnout and patient expectations increasing simultaneously, athenahealth is focused on accelerating product innovation, using tools like AI to help solve some of healthcare's biggest challenges. “As our data show, administrative requirements are taking too much time and attention away from providers, and it’s the responsibility of all EHR companies to decrease that burden so providers can spend more face time with patients,” he said. About athenahealth, Inc. athenahealth creates innovative healthcare technology that connects clinicians, patients, payers, and partners in differentiated ways. Our electronic health records, revenue cycle management, and patient engagement tools allow anytime, anywhere access, driving better financial outcomes for our customers and enabling our provider customers to deliver better quality care. In everything we do, we’re inspired by our vision to create a thriving ecosystem that delivers accessible, high-quality, and sustainable healthcare for all.

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HEALTH TECHNOLOGY

Komodo Health Introduces New Scientific Publications Management Software

Komodo Health | May 12, 2022

Komodo Health announced the launch of Komodo Publications Planning, introducing the next generation of publications planning and management applications for Life Sciences. The automated and highly customizable end-to-end software is designed to make it easier to maximize the impact and outcome of scientific publications and medical communications in an accurate, efficient, and compliant manner. With today’s news, Komodo extends the power of its real-world data and technology for Medical Affairs professionals, offering a comprehensive suite of applications to manage all aspects of publications planning, including a more data-driven approach to engaging with healthcare providers. In order to establish scientific integrity aligned to strategic medical objectives, global Medical Affairs teams are responsible for managing complex publication plans within Life Sciences companies, which can include both pipeline and commercial products or therapeutics with overlapping timelines. Multiple stakeholders need to seamlessly collaborate, provide feedback, and share updates with one another throughout the process, from publication concept through planning, and ultimately, publishing. With out-of-the-box connectors to Altmetric, Office 365, Unpaywall, and the ability to seamlessly integrate and optimize existing technology workflows, Komodo Publications Planning provides the tools to address every aspect of planning, execution, and analysis in a consolidated view to bring speed and ease for Medical Affairs teams. The integrated, user-friendly workflow enhances productivity by helping customers reduce time spent managing tasks to allow more time to focus on producing high-quality publications. For example, Pfizer was seeking a way to evolve and digitize how its publications were managed. The company developed a customized tool with Komodo Publications Planning as its foundation, which allowed Pfizer to roll out one cohesive publications management system that could be leveraged by a variety of stakeholders around the globe, creating a more efficient path for collaborating with authors and third-party agencies. With a consolidated view into its medical and scientific publication plans, Pfizer’s global team can automate the planning process, quickly tracking publication milestones and monitoring study progression using real-time alerts. “Working in partnership with Komodo on designing and building a new publications management system has been an exciting and courageous journey. We were able to realize some of the innovative solutions we wanted to incorporate into our system to advance our publications practice,” Catherine Skobe, MPH, Sr. Director, Publications Innovative Solutions Lead at Pfizer “Legacy publications management applications often require long build cycles and offer limited control; Komodo Publications Planning is helping our customers eliminate the need for multiple, disjointed systems, which often cause timely and costly delays for publishing critical clinical advancements,” said Prasad Kanumury (PK), Mavens founder and General Manager at Komodo Health. “The ability to integrate into existing IT infrastructure is helping Medical Affairs teams to more effectively achieve their scientific objectives and produce timely, journal-accepted publications within a single, customizable solution.” Stemming from the 2021 acquisition, Mavens' integration into Komodo has resulted in a number of new opportunities for enterprise impact. The release of Komodo Publications Planning marks the first new application within Komodo’s Medical Affairs Suite. The Medical Affairs Suite offers end-to-end workflow support on everything from optimizing publications, impact reporting, and clinical education to enabling HCPs with disease burden intelligence and advanced analytic solutions to build comprehensive, measurable, and evidence-based strategies. The suite also allows for strategic engagement opportunities through key expert identification within Komodo’s Aperture application, now with Medical Information Cloud integration, to encourage even more timely, compliant, and trackable clinical interactions. The launch of Komodo Publications Planning coincides with the 18th Annual ISMPP Meeting, where experts from Komodo Health and Pfizer presented about the future evolution of the medical publications ecosystem in a session on May 9th. For more information, visit Komodo Health onsite at booth #14. About Komodo Health Komodo Health is a technology platform company creating the new standard for real-world data and analytics by pairing the industry’s most complete view of patient encounters with enterprise software and machine learning that connects the dots between individual patient journeys and large-scale health outcomes. Across Life Sciences, payer, provider, and developers, we help our customers unearth patient-centric insights at scale — marrying clinical data with advanced algorithms and AI-powered software solutions to inform decision making, close gaps in care, address disease burden, and help the enterprise create a more cost-effective, value-driven healthcare system.

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Spotlight

Dr. Paul Stoffels, our Chief Scientific Officer, co-authored an op-ed in The Guardian with Dr. Peter Piot, Director of the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine, on the importance of staying focused on finding vaccines and therapies to prevent another Ebola epidemic. Just recently, the World Health Organization declared Sierra Leone officially Ebola-free for the first time in a year but new cases continue to emerge in West Africa, including in Liberia and Guinea.

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