The pharmaceutical industry often focuses on short-term progress, but patient companion apps offer significant medium- and long-term value, particularly in collecting and processing real-world data (RWD). While some companies have begun to tap into the potential benefits of digital apps, there is a tendency to seek rapid return on investment, which overlooks further downstream benefits. The U.S. Food & Drug Administration (FDA) distinguishes between real-world evidence (RWE), which refers to clinical evidence derived from the analysis of RWD, and RWD, which refers to routinely collected data relating to patient health status.
Pharma companies often use companion apps to engage their patients, ensure treatment adherence, and collect valuable data that provides actionable insights. However, brand and RWE teams must operate holistically rather than independently to tap into these benefits fully. For instance, insights derived from this data can guide new approaches for patient engagement, improve efficacy metrics, and generate valuable RWE.
In the medium term, digital tech allows companies to collect extensive RWD that shows genuine improvements to patients’ quality of life and enhances clinical outcomes. From a long-term perspective, this advancement in efficacy and results can lead to extended patent life for pharmaceutical products, increasing company revenue significantly.
Thus, pharmaceutical companies that can adopt a longer-term view stand to reap substantial benefits from patient companion apps, including improved patient quality of life, enhanced clinical outcomes, increased efficacy metrics, and greater financial returns.
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[Source: Forbes, September 21st, 2023]