It is almost a year since the start of the pandemic that brought the world to a standstill. Causing more than 1.5 million lives lost and one of the deepest economic crises since the second world war. This event for the healthcare and pharmaceutical sector has resulted in the most urgent and widespread search for vaccines and therapies against Covid-19 in history. On the face of it, it has been a positive year for the pharmaceutical industry due to the large amount of financial investment received, but how it adapts to the new environment will determine its future success.
The pharmaceutical sector has dealt with the uncertainty of the health crisis in the same way as other industries: prioritising the safety of employees and healthcare staff against possible infections, enhancing remote working and utilising the distribution of medicines throughout its global supply chains. At the same time, the Covid-19 pandemic has highlighted the lack of digitisation for remote doctor visits, difficulties in maintaining innovation to find new treatments for some diseases and avoid drug shortages.
The priority over the past few months has been the development of highly effective vaccines to attack the SARS-CoV-2 virus in extremely short and unprecedented time frames. One of the biggest impacts has been the acceleration of digital transformation and the implications of the use of tools in terms of both scalability and regulatory compliance. At Atrivity we are experts in gamification applied to the healthcare sector and we know the keys for organisations to comply with new regulations, adapt to patient interactions and leverage digital resources as part of their business strategy. Do you want to read more about them? Let's get started!
Trend #1 - Patient Empowerment
The new digital paradigm has contributed to a greater understanding of pathologies and symptoms, something that has blurred the barriers between patients and HCPs. What is the result? Patients end up making a "self-diagnosis" that is often wrong. The continuing loss of influence by doctors over patients has a direct impact on the pharmaceutical business.
Result: The patient-first business model.
To succeed in the post-Covid era, pharmaceutical companies must innovate in the development of new communication techniques to engage patients in making decisions based on their needs and outcomes. Hospitals are currently overwhelmed by the continuous waves of coronavirus infections, so many medical visits must be done remotely to avoid possible infection in high-risk individuals. How can pharmaceutical companies strengthen their relationship with their patients?
The Atrivity team has developed together with the leading companies in the pharmaceutical sector several patient onboarding plans for training and monitoring the evolution of the treatment, avoiding the agglomeration of staff in hospitals. Through our gamified mobile application, HCPs are able to send all the information about treatment to patients in a personalised way and obtain feedback on the evolution of the treatment.
Once a patient is diagnosed with a pathology, whether chronic or not, the person in question receives an access code to download Atrivity. Within the app, the patient will find personalised educational content about their pathology, treatment and possible side effects. In addition, HCPs will be able to monitor the patient's progress by reviewing the answers. In a project we have developed with diabetic children, they have been given the possibility of inviting up to 10 friends so that they know how to react in the event that the patient has a crisis.
Trend #2 - Acceleration of the Digital Transformation
The emergence of Covid-19 forced many countries to take the decision to confine their populations indoors almost overnight. For the pharmaceutical sector, digital transformation is a constant and has been accelerated to adapt to current circumstances. Much of the activities carried out by the sector have moved to a virtual format, especially in the interactions between stakeholders within the pharmaceutical business model. What are the challenges it faces?
The digitisation of the sector offers new opportunities for change to improve the relationship with patients and HCPs. But the target audience is not comfortable with digital technology because of a lack of trust, which was generated in face-to-face interactions.
Result: Apps, portals, websites, gamification and digital tools for patient support.
Pharmaceutical reps have started to use the digital tools available to them to create new communication channels to improve relations with stakeholders. However, the healthcare sector must first overcome internal barriers such as the high number of regulations to be complied with in practically all processes. Compliance restrictions mean that the speed at which different digital actions are implemented is slow compared to other sectors. The need to expand and enrich communications with HCPs through digital channels has become a "must" to compensate for pandemic-induced limitations.
⭐Our solution: Communication channel with the HCPs.
At Atrivity we have developed different fully digital communication plans throughout Europe and the United States to enhance communication plans with healthcare professionals. The aim is to align messages from different departments to reach the HCPs through one single channel. This consolidates relevant information from stakeholders with the same healthcare professional.
And that's not all! We have also developed digital plans for HCPs, such as "One Voice", which offers the possibility of unifying all the messages from the entire territorial team with the doctor through a single channel. Access to all the content in a digital library is an advantage for consulting information from independent departments from a smartphone, such as: the pharmacological report from Market Access, value arguments from the sales department and the patient profile study from the medical department.
Trend #3 - New Commercial Strategies inside the digital paradigm
The coronavirus pandemic has all but ended face-to-face interactions, limiting sales reps to finding new ways to contact HCPs. The pharmaceutical industry needs to find the right communication channels to maintain a dialogue with stakeholders, ongoing training and redefine its key messages. What has moved to digital platforms? Product launches, cycle meetings and sales team training.
Result: evolving commercial models and strategy.
The pharmaceutical market has become increasingly customer-centric. What does this mean? Pharmaceutical companies must focus their efforts on creating new avenues of interaction by moving away from "promotional" arguments and focus the commercial model on gaining information and increasing engagement. This new commercial strategy will move away from product and innovation to engage new customers through active listening to meet the needs of the healthcare ecosystem.
How can this challenge be met? The foundations for success lie in education, training and support for business excellence. Helping sales teams to understand needs, be more consultative and make more frequent use of the digital tools at their disposal. More than ever, companies in the industry need to train their teams to influence their stakeholders and to align marketing and sales across the product life cycle.
⭐Our solution: Maximise remote learning for product launches.
When launching a new drug there is a complex set of information that needs to reach the sales team. The possibilities for a meeting are very limited. How can we achieve this with a gamified app? Thanks to mobile applications such as Atrivity, it is possible to break down strategic information into small content pills between 3-5 minutes associated with trivia questions. The app's own algorithm will make each sales delegate repeat the most failed questions and you will obtain a real-time knowledge map of the evolution of knowledge.
Atrivity's team conclusions
Due to the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic, the pharmaceutical industry must make a profound effort to meet the new needs of healthcare professionals and patients. Adopting the right tools will be a "must" to ensure new communication channels between stakeholders, continuous training for employees and sales network and implementing commercial strategies within the digital paradigm.
With a business mobile application such as Atrivity, it is possible to develop specific plans to empower patients, conduct quality distance training for employees and also align them with business strategies. Gamification has become a solid and effective solution that is going to stay within pharmaceutical companies.