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The Active Ingredient features expert insights and commentary from leaders of ZS Associates' global pharmaceuticals practice.

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How the Right RWE Platform Serves Up the Ingredients for Innovation

Posted by ZS Editors on Tue, Sep 04, 2018

Many pharmaceutical companies have realized the benefits of moving from standalone real-world data (RWD) projects to full-fledged, cross-functional real-world evidence (RWE) capabilities to drive everything from their R&D programs to their commercial teams’ efforts to demonstrate value—and technology is central to their success. “Real-world evidence is essentially extracting intelligence out of real-world data, and now that we have the right technology, scalable cloud storage and tremendous processing power, we’re actually able to sift through big data to find those insights,” says Abhay Jha, a principal at ZS and the business technology lead in the firm’s R&D excellence practice.  

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Topics: Innovation, R&D, technology innovation, RWE, data and analytics, RWD

Is AI in Pharma Ready to Move From Hype to Hope?

Posted by Pratap Khedkar on Thu, Jan 11, 2018

This is the first post in a three-part series on artificial intelligence in healthcare. 

We encounter artificial intelligence platforms outside of healthcare on a regular basis, like when we ask Siri a question or view Netflix’s list of suggested films. However, within healthcare, and in the pharmaceutical industry specifically, AI has yet to live up to that level of success. In the near future, will AI become embedded in pharma R&D? Will it enable treatment decisions to be more automated—and more accurate? I recently called my colleague John Piccone, a ZS principal and advanced data science expert who previously led IBM Watson Health’s life sciences offerings, to discuss AI’s use both within pharma and throughout the healthcare ecosystem.

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Topics: Big Pharma, Pratap Khedkar, R&D, artificial intelligence, automation tools, technology innovation, pharma companies, artificial intelligence & pharma, AI blog series

How Technology and Analytics Are Helping Big Pharma Improve Patient Engagement in R&D

Posted by Kristyn Feldman on Wed, Nov 01, 2017

Lisa Bance co-wrote this blog post with Kristyn Feldman.

This is the third post in a four-part series examining patient centricity within R&D.

As drug development continues to grow more expensive and complex, and as patients expect to be more involved and empowered throughout the healthcare system, pharmaceutical companies are seeing the value in partnering with patients throughout the R&D process. The journey begins with building an understanding of and empathy for today’s patients, and then uncovering and meeting their needs. The third step is to hone in on how you connect with patients to increase the effectiveness of your communications.

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Topics: Big Pharma, Analytics, Patient Engagement, drug development, medical technology, R&D, clinical trials, patient centricity, patient centricity in R&D, meet patient needs

How Biopharma Companies Are Working to Uncover and Meet Patient Needs

Posted by Kristyn Feldman on Wed, Oct 25, 2017

Lisa Bance co-wrote this blog post with Kristyn Feldman.

This is the second post in a four-part series examining patient centricity within R&D.

As pharmaceutical companies aim to make their drug development processes more patient-centric, we’ve noted that a formula for success is starting to emerge, and we’ve packaged that formula into our four pillars of patient centricity in R&D. In our last post, we addressed the first pillar: gaining an understanding of and empathy for patients. In this post, we review the second pillar: uncovering and meeting patients’ needs.

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Topics: Pharma, Pharma Industry, Patient Engagement, drug development, co-creation, R&D, patient centricity, patient centricity in R&D, meet patient needs, collaborative communication

How to Develop a Patient-Centric R&D Process

Posted by Kristyn Feldman on Wed, Oct 18, 2017

Lisa Bance co-wrote this blog post with Kristyn Feldman.

This post is the first in a four-part series examining patient centricity within R&D.

The concept of patient centricity within drug development is far from novel, yet many pharmaceutical companies still struggle to put the patient at the center of their R&D efforts. In a recent article, we wrote about the need for pharmaceutical companies to become true partners in patients’ health. In fact, our research shows that engaging patients from the outset could lead to improved patient recruitment and retention and reduce R&D costs and timelines. Here’s the first step—one of four—that companies can take to start moving toward patient-centric drug development.

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Topics: drug development, R&D, clinical trial design, clinical trials, patient centricity, patient voice, patient empathy, patient feedback, patient centricity in R&D

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