The COVID-19 pandemic has brought out the best in the healthcare marketing industry. Here’s a roundup of what various companies are doing.
AbelsonTaylor fielded a survey in late March to get a better sense of how doctors were feeling and changing their habits during the COVID-19 pandemic. Doctors are suddenly adapting to virtual visits and changing prescribing habits to help patients during the crisis, the survey found. AbelsonTaylor is helping pharma clients get an idea of what doctors need right now and the survey provides insights on the type of information physicians are looking for from pharma. That way, these companies can send out the most relevant information to better support these overworked doctors.
The Bloc has developed SafeCode, a device that can be used with a barcode scanner to destroy viruses and bacteria. The UV-C technology in the device can be used when scanning delivery shipments in hopes this will reduce the spread of COVID-19 from touching packages. The agency is making the plans for the barcode available for free and without any licensing.
In an effort to nourish their neighbors in the surrounding community, Calcium recently donated enough boxes of food to feed 80 families to Philabundance and the Share Food Program — a local partnership that set up several free food sites to help Philadelphia residents in need. These boxes can provide up to four meals for a family of four, which can make a critical difference in nourishment for those impacted by COVID-19.
Continuing their commitment to the rare disease community, Cambridge BioMarketing released a special episode of their Rare in Common podcast, focused on the impact of the pandemic on rare. Host Andra Stratton talks to guests Neena Nizar and Seth Rotberg about their experiences as people living with rare diseases in the new world of COVID-19, the unique challenges the rare community is experiencing, and their hopes for how we can use learnings from this time to brighten the future.
Specialty medicine point of care company CheckedUp has launched Virtual Visits, an advanced telemedicine system designed by physicians. The platform simplifies scheduling and operations and allows patients to see the specialist they know in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic.
Concentric Health Experience
During the month of May, Concentric is celebrating all families and caregivers who have taken on extra duties during the pandemic. The agency is kicking off this initiative with a focus on Mother’s Day with DIY card making and works of art to be gifted to Mom on Sunday. They’re also offering a prerecorded cooking class, puzzles, activity sheets, family exercise classes, and a playlist of songs for the whole family. Next up, they will showcase a family movie night with simple meal pairing ideas.
Concentric is also raising money to support the mental and emotional health of NewYork-Presbyterian healthcare workers. The agency is matching employee donations of up to $5,000.
Definitive Healthcare has launched COVID-19 Capacity Predictor. The tool is an interactive map that predicts where and when to allocate resources as coronavirus cases increase. In collaboration with Esri, the company has also launched a U.S. hospital beds dashboard. The interactive dashboard shares information on number of ICU beds, licensed beds, staffed beds and the bed utilization rate.
Fingerpaint began weekly surveys of HCPs in March. During a time when information is constantly changing, the agency wanted to get regular updates on the state of HCPs and provide that information to its clients in short snapshots. These surveys found that doctors are concerned about patients’ access to care and about their own practices, among other issues. For the pharma brands marketing to doctors, these surveys give them an idea of the most relevant information for HCPs during this pandemic. The information is meant to give pharma an empathetic view of doctors right now to better plan HCP communications during an uncertain time.
Healthcare Businesswomen’s Association has launched the #GoodNewsNow campaign to recognize industry partners who are working to battle COVID-19.
Dana-Farber Cancer Institute’s Who’s The Hero Behind The Mask? initiative, designed by Dana-Farber and IPNY, celebrates all Dana-Farber frontliners via social media channels. The effort invites participants to post images and notes on their Facebook, Instagram, Twitter or LinkedIn feeds using #MyDanaFarberHero to give shout outs to both specific Dana-Farber employees and frontliners in general.
Intouch has teamed up with Heart to Heart International, a global humanitarian organization focused on improving access to healthcare services. The company will donate $100,000 to support Heart to Heart International’s community program focused on preventing the spread of COVID-19. Specifically, they are supporting the infection prevention and control training for medical and non-medical works around the world. Intouch employees are also invited to sponsor HHI’s “Stay Healthy” kits for $10 each. The kits include critical infection prevention and control items such as cloth face coverings, hand sanitizing wipes, and gloves, and will be distributed to people in need through homeless shelters, food pantries, and other community assistance groups across the country.
Invivo Communications created the Coronavirus Explorer, an interactive model of the SARS-CoV-2 virus. The tool can be used to explore the virus’ biological structure in a whole new way. Access the application using the Microsoft HoloLens 2 to view the coronavirus surface proteins and a cutaway view of the RNA inside its shell.
Kantar has launched Kantar Oncology Platform, an online medical platform to help oncologists making informed decisions during the pandemic. The platform provides oncologists with anonymous patient data in regards to changes in their cancer treatments.
Since the start of the pandemic in early March, Klick Health has been tapping into its expertise to provide relief in various ways. The agency is collaborating with outside organizations, including the Boston Children’s Hospital, Dock Health and Harvard University researchers, to develop digital tools to halt the spread of COVID-19. Additionally, Klick donated and delivered 300,000 medical-grade KN95 masks to hospitals and health systems in the greater Toronto area and 300 transparent polycarbonate intubation boxes. Klick has also established the Frontlines.Health Foundation to help fund personal protective equipment for healthcare workers.
Mesmerize has partnered with ASP Cares to provide digital TV screens in all 40 ASP Cares locations in the U.S. ASP Cares delivers patient education to underserved communities and connects people to valuable resources that empower them to stay healthy through its network of specialty pharmacies.
To help individuals navigate the “new normal” brought on by the COVID-19 pandemic, MicroMass Communications launched COVID Compass. The website supports wellness by providing reliable information, helping individuals connect with people and providing ways to reduce stress. For example, one activity minimizes stress and encourages you to be more present by helping you focus on all five senses.
MJH Life Sciences
MJH Life Sciences conducted a series of physician surveys during the COVID-19 pandemic to find out about patient communication and the financial impact on practices.
The company donated $27,310 to Penn Medicine’s Healthcare Heroes Fund, a charity that provides frontline healthcare workers with fresh meals after their shifts. MJH also collected $4,780 in donations for the New Jersey Pandemic Relief Fund in April.
Finally, MJH has raised $15,180 for the National Medical Fellowships, a nonprofit dedicated to increasing the number of underrepresented minority physicians and other professionals in the healthcare workforce in order to improve access to quality healthcare in medically underserved communities.
OptimizeRx began providing a public health service through its electronic health record for free COVID-19 alerts with information from the CDC. The company also launched a new support for physicians within the EHR called TelaRep. This platform allows physicians to securely speak with medical science liaisons who can help providers create the right treatment regimen for patients who need specialty drugs.
PatientPoint is offering its COVID-19 education to all healthcare providers to download and use to reach patients wherever they are and whenever they need support. PatientPoint has also been offering daily insights from the field for clients and agency partners on its COVID-19 live blog. This resource provides clients and agency partners a window into what’s happening on the ground in practices across the country, provide actionable insights and to share good news about how providers are leveraging the library of COVID-19 content.
In the U.S. alone, millions of students have been impacted by the closing of universities due to the COVID-19 pandemic. In an effort to help newly graduated students who may feel helpless as they enter the workforce during this time – as well as pave the way for the next generation of biopharma leaders – PTC Therapeutics launched the Talent Pipeline Program, a global internship program for recent graduates that will provide work experience and training in the biopharmaceutical industry and related professions, including research, finance, commercial, compliance, quality, legal, information technology and communications.
“Amid this global pandemic, many talented and hardworking recent graduates are rightfully worried about being able to enter the workforce. While this is an unfortunate reality, at PTC we want to help and be part of the solution,” said Stuart W. Peltz, Ph.D., Chief Executive Officer of PTC Therapeutics.
The Talent Pipeline Program will provide approximately 30 interns a one-year program of real-world training experience and will include a stipend. Throughout the immersive internship program, participants will be provided mentorship, job coaching, career counseling, and leadership training. Successful participants will be provided a Certificate of Completion, a letter of reference, and consideration for future positions at PTC.
In May, Razorfish Health launched HCPulse, a quarterly survey of physicians from across therapeutic areas, including primary care, pediatrics, oncology, and rheumatology. This proprietary research tracks HCP responses over time — an essential differentiator, given that we live in a time of rapid change.
Initial findings have revealed physicians need more support than ever, both practically and emotionally. The RFH Physician Confidence Score aggregates responses to understand HCP confidence levels across three areas — financial, operational and personal – and uncover what is truly driving physician behavior changes. Not surprisingly, physician confidence is low, with community practitioners hit especially hard.
In an era where we are both more virtually connected than ever before and increasingly isolated, HCPs want to hear from pharma. Physicians are looking for three key things: shifted content to address the new normal, support for their patients and practice, and real-world evidence for their patient base related to COVID. There is a desire to work together and learn from one another as healthcare rapidly evolves.
At this moment, there is tremendous opportunity for the pharmaceutical industry to work alongside HCPs to redefine the practice of medicine for the next generation. By identifying areas of low confidence and opportunity gaps, we can pinpoint where, when and how we can best support physicians and the patients they serve.
Relevate Health Group
Everyone is making adjustments to the way we work and live during this time of COVID-19. Healthcare has felt the impact hardest, which has led to great innovation to find a new way of doing business. At Relevate Health Group, that innovation resulted in the creation of a COVID-19 dashboard.
Historically Relevate’s model utilized traditional metrics to evaluate performance for its partners. These metrics included prescription share, new-to-brand share, volume increases, physician access and managed care access. But when COVID-19 hit, the company realized it was important to consider its impact on business, especially patient-to-HCP engagement.
The agency’s teams expanded their thinking to include metrics that show physician burden by market based on COVID-19 cases and death rates, while also considering population size and other factors. As an example, take the number of patients living with comorbidities. Research shows patients with comorbidities have been afraid to go to the hospital for treatment of any kind. This added stress on the health system, because preventive measures may have been skipped and patients who may have gotten sicker over these few months now need to be treated.
Factors such as these have impacted local markets, often at disproportionate rates – and the way we engage medical providers will be forever changed as a result of this pandemic. It is important that marketers consider the community impact, as well as the medical one, when planning for HCP engagement.
Sermo conducted a global survey of more than 1,100 physicians. Results showed that HCPs expect to have fewer representative meetings after the crisis. HCPs agree that it is important for manufacturers to provide information on the drug supply status. The majority of physicians prefer to be reached via email. For more data, view the survey results here.
To encourage the public to stay home, Spectrum Science launched a social media campaign, #BeatTheSit, along with a video. Employees shared examples of why they’re practicing social distancing for the campaign to spread the message.
Global biopharma company UCB, with U.S. headquarters in Atlanta, and local restaurant Lazy Betty, helped to deliver healthy gourmet meals to Grady Memorial Hospital healthcare workers throughout the month of May. While these businesses may seem like unexpected partners, their leaders have two fundamental things in common: the desire to make a difference in the lives of those on the frontlines of the COVID-19 crisis and a commitment to nourishing the Atlanta business community.
UCB donated funding for the creation and delivery of 1,000 lunches and dinners for healthcare workers, ranging from traditional Korean noodle dish japchae to local Georgia chicken. In addition to the meals, UCB has donated to community efforts in Atlanta and encouraged employees to take up to 32 hours of paid time off to volunteer in support of the COVID-19 response.
Veeva began providing free remote meeting capability in early February to roll out a new four-week program that enables biopharma field teams to go digital fast. Veeva also introduced the first compliant remote sampling capability that virtualizes in-person sampling.
W2O and the California Life Sciences associated created a regularly updating communications dashboard for coronavirus information. The platform focuses on five different groups: HCPS, life sciences, media, scientific community and California. The agency also launched the #OurCoronaFighters Instagram account, backed Ventilator SOS and is raising money to find and buy personal protective equipment for healthcare workers and medical facilities. W2O CEO and founder Jim Weiss has also joined The Common Project, a nonprofit that has created a COVID-19 risk-assessment and mapping platform.
Has your company done something extraordinary for others amid the COVID-19 pandemic? If so, we want to hear about it. Send a few paragraphs, along with photos or graphics if available, to MM&M’s Larry Dobrow. We’ll publish some of the responses on our website.