Drug regulator maps out new site inspection norms for safer medicines

May 31, 2016

NEW DELHI:The Central Drug Standard Control Organisation (CDSCO) is drawing up a new inspection model for pharmaceutical manufacturing sites that will help identify compliance issues and products that can be potentially harmful. The move follows concerns raised by foreign drug regulators over quality of medicines produced in India...

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An optimized protocol is presented for the generation of monoclonal antibodies based on the hybridoma technology. Mice were immunized with an immunoconjugate. 


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HEALTHTECH SECURITY

Komodo Health Appoints Lauren Stahl as Head of Sales

Komodo Health | September 29, 2022

Healthcare technology company Komodo Health announced that Lauren Stahl has been appointed as the company’s Vice President and Head of Sales, effective immediately. In this capacity, Stahl’s responsibilities include sales team leadership across Komodo’s entire portfolio of customers, overseeing operational strategy to drive business efficiencies amid year-over-year growth and market expansion. As Komodo’s new Head of Sales, Stahl will oversee the company’s entire sales organization, with responsibilities for driving business and revenue growth as Komodo scales its offerings and footprint across more than a dozen market segments. Today’s appointment is the latest example of strategic business enhancements being made to power the next phase of innovation, growth, and productivity for the company. The new sales structure will further optimize business development and customer collaboration opportunities as the company introduces new capabilities across its technology platform and software applications. “Lauren has demonstrated an exceptional track record of deepening customer relationships and unlocking new market and customer sales channels. As Komodo continues to invest in its end-to-end technology platform, having Lauren at the helm of our sales teams will only further accelerate our efforts to put Komodo’s best-in-class technology platform and patient-centric insights in the hands of organizations across Life Sciences, payers, government entities, and more.” Aswin Chandrakantan, MD, Chief Operating Officer at Komodo Health Stahl has been driving value for Komodo and its customers for more than three years, quickly rising through the ranks as an individual sales executive to their most recent position as Komodo’s Vice President of Healthcare Sales, where Lauren and their team focused on strategic partnerships with a variety of healthcare innovators to deliver data-driven impact for health plans, digital marketers, consultancies, and more. In this new role overseeing Komodo’s entire sales organization, Stahl will serve as a key sales leader to deliver impact in new market segments and continue to drive hypergrowth revenue for the company. “I’m humbled and inspired to expand my leadership responsibilities and am eager to continue building on the company’s success and impact in the market,” said Stahl. “Representing Komodo means being a champion for how we are redefining the way healthcare and Life Sciences companies drive innovation into the market. Our technology platform and solutions empower our customers to transform extraordinary amounts of data into rich and meaningful insights that can improve health outcomes.” Stahl brings nearly 15 years of deep healthcare expertise to this new role, along with extensive financial and sales knowledge drawn from their career on Wall Street and leadership at several digital health companies. Before joining Komodo, Stahl was Head of Customer Success at Datavant, and was previously the CEO and founder of Sparkite, a company focused on addiction and substance abuse aftercare treatment. 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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HEALTH TECHNOLOGY

Aktana Welcomes New Medical Affairs Lead from IBM Watson Health (Now Merative)

Aktana | September 28, 2022

Aktana, the leader in intelligent customer engagement for the global life sciences industry, welcomes Deepak Patil as its new senior director of medical strategy. Patil comes to Aktana after leadership roles at IBM Watson Health, IQVIA, and Sun Pharma Industries where he managed medical affairs in conjunction with six key product launches and developed lasting relationships with key opinion leaders in targeted therapeutic areas. At Aktana, Patil will lead the company’s medical affairs program, initially helping to build modern, data-driven solutions for medical science liaisons but over time, also expand to other areas within medical affairs. Medical Affairs is the “third strategic pillar of the pharmaceutical organization alongside R&D and commercial, as science and data merge,” according to a McKinsey report. Business models are starting to evolve both around and beyond the “product” to encompass the wider therapeutic context, while organizations seek to explain and contextualize the ever more complex medical science to a diverse range of stakeholders. In outreach efforts, MSLs and commercial teams can unintentionally overlap, causing major compliance issues and frustrating doctors. Aktana’s intelligence solutions will not only help medical affairs improve key opinion leader relationships but also better orchestrate outreach to the physician community in compliance with regional engagement regulations. “Deepak brings a unique blend of medical experience – he received his medical degree in India – plus data science and operational expertise from IQVIA and IBM. As we prioritize new, AI-driven solutions for medical affairs teams, Deepak will help expertly shape our new offerings while building a powerhouse team focused on this increasingly important area of life sciences.” Clay Hausmann, chief revenue officer at Aktana Aktana has also announced a strategic partnership with Envision Pharma Group, a global, technology-enabled scientific communications company operating across many areas of medical affairs. Envision and Aktana will combine their offerings to help MSLs address HCP demands for personalized scientific content and coordinated omnichannel engagement. “Aktana is committed to enabling the medical affairs organization in a new era, and I’m excited to serve in a leadership role as part of this endeavor,” said Deepak Patil. “The real-world data is there. With the right technology, we have the power to improve the generation and dissemination of scientific insights to physicians, leading to better treatment decisions and outcomes for their patients.” With more than 300 deployments across 50+ use cases, Aktana has been refining its commercial life sciences intelligence platform for more than a decade. More than half of the world's top-20 pharmaceutical companies rely on Aktana to coordinate and optimize personalized omnichannel engagement with HCPs. Aktana’s Contextual Intelligence 360 platform is powered by the company’s next-generation Contextual Intelligence Engine, which uses AI-driven optimization to predict the value of all potential customer experiences, then prioritize and recommend Next Best Engagements that will deliver the highest ROI. About Aktana Aktana is the category creator and leader of intelligent engagement in the global life sciences industry. By ensuring that every customer experience is tailored to individual preferences and needs, Aktana helps life science companies strengthen their relationships with healthcare providers to inspire better patient care. Today, commercial and medical teams from more than 300 brands use Aktana’s AI-enabled Contextual Intelligence Engine to coordinate and optimize personalized omnichannel engagement at scale. More than half of the top-20 global pharmaceutical companies are Aktana customers. Headquartered in San Francisco, Aktana has offices in every major biopharma region around the world.

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HEALTHTECH SECURITY

Zócalo Health’s Culturally Competent Virtual Healthcare Services for Latino Communities Now Available

Zócalo Health | October 12, 2022

Zócalo Health, a Latino-founded healthcare service designed for Latino patients, announced the launch of its primary care memberships for residents across California and Texas. Starting members can access same day virtual care visits and care navigation services via Zócalo’s website, introducing the Latino community to an improved and long overdue healthcare experience built on trust, relationships, and culture. Zócalo Health, which premiered as an invite-only service to select members earlier this summer, was founded by Erik Cardenas and Mariza Hardin to strengthen the health and wellbeing of the Latino community by eliminating barriers to high-quality healthcare services. This multi-state launch demonstrates the company’s continued commitment to delivering affordable and accessible primary care that blends tradition with innovation and prioritizes trusting relationships between providers and patients. Members will have access to a range of services and care options that would typically be addressed in primary care including: mental health conditions, preventative and lifestyle needs, chronic disease management, urgent care, and other more specific health conditions. The Zócalo primary care model includes the use of community health workers (CHWs) – or as they’re known in the Latino community, promotores de salud. Research shows CHWs are crucial to helping health systems achieve their full potential, since they work to connect patients to local resources and care. At Zócalo, promotores work individually with members to coordinate their care across a team of physicians, nurses, and mental health therapists, as well as connect members to needed resources across the community. Clinicians and promotores are hired from the communities they serve and can provide culturally competent care in both English and Spanish. By building care teams that come from and look like the communities they serve, the team is better able to foster a primary care relationship with patients. Once care has been established with Zócalo Health, members have 24/7 access to chat with their promotor de salud to receive individual guidance on personal health goals and needs. “Today, I am immensely proud to open up Zócalo Health’s services to the community. As a kid, I remember the long waits in the community health clinic to see a doctor who often did not speak Spanish. I had to act as a translator for my mom about my own care and help her navigate next steps. I felt guilty that my mom had to take time off from work for my appointment and pay for any prescriptions or additional care needed. For my family, no work meant no pay, so a doctor’s visit was a heavy burden on everyone,” said Zócalo Health CEO Erik Cardenas. “As the landscape for healthcare delivery has changed with technology, our community continues to get left behind. The one-size-fits-all model for healthcare doesn’t work for everyone. I owe it to my parents and my family to do better. Zócalo Health is focused on giving our people a community built around their healthcare needs.” Despite the major cultural impact the Latino population has had on the U.S., and their increased spending power year after year, the U.S. healthcare system has been slow to adapt its services to the needs of this community’s unique health and cultural needs. Latinos still experience disproportionate barriers to healthcare access, particularly in primary care, where the average wait time to see a doctor is 24 days. This long delay, combined with fewer in-person appointments, high-deductible plans, and high out-of-pocket fees, results in many Latino patients avoiding treatment, using informal networks (family/friends), or waiting for hours in expensive emergency rooms to seek care. In addition to the existing disparities in healthcare access, the COVID-19 pandemic and resulting economic impact have exacerbated health inequities for the Latino community, particularly when it comes to accessing high-quality primary care and preventative services. “I’ve always been community-oriented and my role as a promotora gives me the opportunity to help other Latinos manage their health and navigate a system that unfortunately has not adapted to our needs. “I’m so excited to be able to guide my community through what can often be a stressful experience in order to deliver personalized care management from someone who understands our culture and needs. Our Zócalo Health team is ready to advocate for our members and ultimately impact our community’s health, one person at a time.” Zócalo Health promotora Caroline Carbajal Zócalo Health’s membership and payment options are designed to make access to primary care easy and affordable for Latinos. Services are offered through monthly memberships, with pricing starting at $40 per month or at a discounted rate of $420 a year when paid upfront. Patients in California and Texas can now purchase a membership and schedule same-day virtual appointments by visiting zocalo.health. Zócalo Health plans to expand to other states in 2022 and beyond. About Zócalo Health Zócalo Health is a Latino-founded healthcare service designed for the Latino patient. Our primary care model blends tradition with innovation and prioritizes trusting relationships between care teams and patients. Each member of Zócalo Health is paired with a promotor de salud (community health worker) to establish a relationship to better understand members’ goals and connect them to a Zócalo Health physician. Our team of physicians, hired from the community, focus on prevention, primary care, behavioral health, and traditional practices that work together to support our members’ wellness. Operating in the states of California and Texas, Zócalo Health offers affordable and convenient care memberships that provide same-day access to culturally-aligned providers.

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HEALTH TECHNOLOGY

Francisco Partners to Acquire bswift from CVS Health

Francisco Partners | October 04, 2022

Francisco Partners a leading global investment firm that specializes in partnering with technology businesses, announced it has signed a definitive agreement to acquire bswift, a leading provider of benefits technology and services, from CVS Health. Founded in 1996, bswift is a provider of software and services that streamline benefits and human resources administration, offering a cloud-based technology platform with best-in-class service. The company combines its deep expertise and passion for technology innovation with strong customer service and a unique consumer-driven approach. bswift helps its partners and employers simplify administration, manage employee benefits, reduce administrative costs, and connect employees with resources needed to achieve their health ambitions. The company serves millions of employees with a single benefit destination across all life events from hire to retire. bswift will continue to partner with CVS Health and Aetna, a CVS Health company, to provide benefits technology to its employees and client base. “CVS Health and Aetna remain committed to bswift and to the clients, partners and members we support in benefits administration. FP’s deep expertise in technology and proven track record in nurturing and growing technology businesses will enable bswift’s loyal base of employees to continue delivering innovative solutions.” Mark Santos, Vice President, Diversified Commercial Solutions at Aetna Since its launch over 20 years ago, Francisco Partners has invested in over 400 technology companies, making it one of the most active and long-standing investors in the technology industry. Francisco Partners has experience in the healthcare and human capital technology market and its investments have focused on companies that provide the best possible products and service for its customers and partners. Francisco Partners also has extensive experience partnering with corporations to execute divisional carve-outs with transactions such as IBM’s Watson Health business (now Merative) and Discovery Inc.’s Discovery Education business. Justin Chen, Partner at Francisco Partners, said, “We are excited to partner with bswift and help the team continue to grow its robust technology and service offerings across benefits and healthcare. bswift is uniquely positioned as a market leader to help employers navigate the evolving industry trends and opportunities to holistically engage employees through health, wellness and financial benefits.” “We appreciate CVS Health’s work in growing this business and are confident that our partnership will help bswift drive crucial focus in executing on organic and inorganic growth strategies,” said Anders Mikkelsen, Vice President at Francisco Partners. “We look forward to supporting the talented employees and management team.” Financial terms of the transaction have not been disclosed. The acquisition is expected to close in the fourth quarter of 2022, subject to the satisfaction of customary closing conditions. Kirkland & Ellis LLP served as legal advisor and Wells Fargo Securities, LLC served as financial advisor to Francisco Partners. CVS Health engaged Fried, Frank, Harris, Shriver & Jacobson LLP and Dechert LLP as legal counsel and Goldman Sachs as exclusive financial advisor. About Francisco Partners Francisco Partners is a leading global investment firm that specializes in partnering with technology and technology-enabled businesses. Since its launch over 20 years ago, Francisco Partners has invested in over 400 technology companies, making it one of the most active and longstanding investors in the technology industry. With approximately $45 billion in capital raised to date, the firm invests in opportunities where its deep sectoral knowledge and operational expertise can help companies realize their full potential. About bswift bswift helps customers change the way their employees perceive and engage with their benefits through a proven blend of adaptive technology, service excellence, and compassionate service. Their intuitive, personalized enrollment experience inspires confidence and connects employees to the resources they need to achieve their personal ambitions. Partnering with enterprises nationwide and serving millions of employees, bswift offers cloud-based technology and services for online enrollment, interactive decision support, ACA compliance reporting and employee engagement.

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