Friday, October 24, 2014

ePharma Buzz- 10/24

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#ePharma news waits for no man.  As digitally connected as we all are, it’s easy to miss a thing or two over the course of a busy week.  Are you guilty of putting down your phone, iPad or laptop for an hour or two these last few days?  No sweat.  We took the liberty of pulling together some worthwhile pieces of news from this past week.   

Uber's Well-Suited For House Calls — Uberhealth Should Live On, Venture Beat- We've seen several tech giants begin to delve into healthcare lately.  Could Uber be the latest on that list?  The company executed a one-day pilot with Harvard medical school to deliver flu vaccinations in New York City, D.C. and Boston yesterday.  All shots are administered by a registered RN.  The vaccinations are at no cost to the patient but Uber does ask that you have a “suitable indoor environment” ready before the nurse arrives.  The pilot program was available for a five hour window (although it's unclear how a strike by NYC Uber drivers may have disrupted some of those plans).    

Alyssa Greenberg for Uber

Amy Price: Patients Doing Research For Themselves, The BMJ- Should patients be “allowed” to do their own research?  Some feel that they can do more harm than good with this sort of “self-experimentation”.  Amy Price shows that patients do in fact have a track record of successfully researching and self-managing their own conditions.  This begs the question as to whether those without medical training can contribute to health innovation.  The article cites some examples that answer that question.  

5 Reasons Why Digital Pharma Needs Physician Key Opinion Leaders¸ mHealth News- David Lee Scher (@dlschermd) writes that physician key opinion leaders (KOLs) will pave the way for provider acceptance of shared decision making.  He projects the arrival of a new group of digital KOLs will compliment the traditional group.  One of his arguments for the establishment of this new group is that “physicians are at the crossroads of all things medical and digital.” He sees patient portals as the future digital hub of healthcare and the “gateway to connected health.”  David’s other four arguments can be found in the article.

Back to the Future of Medicine: 3 Reasons Why Healthcare Needs Hackathons, LinkedIn- Healthcare and tech are beginning to overlap in more and more instances so naturally, we’re seeing the growth of healthcare hackathons.  Aman Bhandari (@GHideas) and Sachin Jain (@sacjai) have analyzed over 100 health related hackathons since they say the first one was launched in 2010.  According to that data, there have been 51 to date this year in comparison to 36 last year and 23 the year before.  “The hackathon model, while not a cure-all provides an unparalleled innovation opportunity,” writes Bhandari.


Drugmakers May Need Indemnity For Fast-Tracked Ebola Vaccines¸ Reuters- Drug makers are reportedly looking for some type of protection for governments against potential claims stemming from any emergency use of new Ebola vaccines in Africa.  GSK Chief Executive Andrew Witty is quoted as saying that a system of indemnity makes sense given the unique circumstances brought on by this situation.  Witty said the indemnity would not be necessary for early clinical trial programs but would be important down the road.  A high level meeting to discuss the topic was held in Geneva late yesterday. 

We’ll have more on the latest in the field of pharma marketing at ePharma. Join us February 24-26 in New York, NY.

This piece was contributed by @MikeMadarasz

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