Taren Grom, Editor
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New Healthcare-related Products, Services, and Companies
Featured Briefs: Publicis Healthcare Communications Group Launches Publicis Health Media Havas Health Launches New Global Agency Group INC Research Expands Global Consulting Capabilities Cenduit Introduces New Clinical Trial Supply Simulation and Forecasting Service Janssen R&D Establishes Global Cross-Pharmaceutical Clinical Trial Investigator Databank AROUND THE GLOBE WHAT’S NEW Publicis Healthcare Communications Group (PHCG), the global healthcare communications network, has created Publicis Health Media (PHM), a network fusing media into a specialized health and wellness practice. PHM isa new business unit within PHCG offering broad thinking and buying power. PHM addresses today’s ever-changing media landscape by helping pharma, health, and wellness clients to connect with their audiences with relevant, engaging experiences. The distinction of this offering is the integration of media at all agencies within PHCG. Not only is this model new for PHCG, it is unique for the healthcare category by uniting media and creative thinking while delivering time and cost-efficiencies for clients. PHCG can now help its clients navigate the entire paid-owned and earned media ecosystem through brokering partnerships with global publishers for the co-creation and syndication of content across platforms. Matt McNally has been named president, Publicis Health Media, and is leading the new business unit for PHCG. He is responsible for media strategy, planning, buying, content distribution, and search across all PHCG agency brands worldwide, including Digitas Health, Saatchi & Saatchi Health, and Publicis Life Brands. Mr. McNally launched and led the media divisions of Digitas Health and Razorfish Health since 2004, which has grown to be a leader in health and wellness media, with four locations throughout the world. His career spans more than 15 years; he has partnered with world-class brands in the pharmaceutical, OTC, medical device, managed care, and wellness space. He helped launched the media practice at Insight Interactive Group, and led health media at one of the first digital agencies in the U.S. “We created this integrated offering to provide all of our clients with thinking that blurs the line between content and context, while meeting each client’s needs through tailored service by the local agency teams who best know and understand their markets and their clients,” Mr. McNally says. The health and wellness sector has been changing dramatically with consumers, physicians, and providers seeking information, support, and treatments from a variety of sources and across media platforms. According to Mr. McNally, health and wellness requires a unique skillset. “There is a fundamental difference between searching for ‘the best Italian restaurant in New York,’ and ‘what chemo agent is best for my mother,’” he says. “When it comes to matters of health and wellness, consumers are solving not seeking. Clients need partners who understand today’s health consumer and can help create engaging experiences, not the latest ad campaign.” Trend: Health and wellness focus of integrated media strategy Havas Health Launches New Global Agency Group Havas Health has launched a new global agency group: Havas Lynx. Havas Lynx, comprised of what was formerly known as Euro RSCG Life 4D and Creative Lynx, brings a full-service agency offering, rich in digital experience and innovation. The group has a bold mission: to serve as agents of the next era in health, dedicated to helping clients connect consumers, professionals and brands with information, services, and influence to drive new relationships and better outcomes. The launch marks the formation of the third agency group within the Havas Health family alongside sister-agencies Havas Life (formerly known as Euro RSCG Life) and Health4Brands (H4B). Havas Lynx has offices in New York, Manchester, and London. In the United States, Larry Mickelberg, chief digital officer, partner, Havas Health, will also serve as president of Havas Lynx, while in Europe, Havas Lynx will be led by its four directors, Neil Martin, David Hunt, Dave Whittingham, and Steve Nicholas. “Technology is completely changing the health and wellness landscape,” Mr. Mickelberg says. “Launching Havas Lynx is more than a rebranding; it’s the formation of a new group designed to help create and connect the new health ecosystem through which all future consumer, patient, and healthcare professional journeys will happen.” INC Research Expands Global Consulting Capabilities INC Research, a therapeutically focused CRO, has launched INC Research Strategic Advisory Services, a new global business unit dedicated to providing biopharmaceutical customers with consulting capabilities in the areas of drug development and commercialization, regulatory consulting and submissions, and quality assurance. Through a new integrated services model, INC Research provides clinical expertise with extensive strategic advisory capabilities to help biopharmaceutical organizations mitigate risks, maximize resources, and offer greater insight into product development lifecycles, commercialization opportunities and challenges. “We’re excited to offer strategic advisory capabilities to biopharmaceutical companies in a more integrated way,” says Tim Dietlin, senior VP, global consulting and strategic alliances and head of the new unit. “Working as an integrated team gives our experts better visibility into our customers’ product development lifecycles and needs, enabling a true strategic partnership to evolve. This model allows greater flexibility and agility to identify opportunities, anticipate challenges and offer a broader range of perspectives and options for how to best address them.” INC Research Strategic Advisory Services comprises three practice areas: AVOS Consulting, the company’s strategic management consulting division, which offers independent perspectives on the future business environment for healthcare products and services to pharmaceutical, biotech, device, and diagnostic companies; Regulatory Consulting and Submissions, which offers regulatory expertise across the entire lifecycle of small molecules, proteins (innovators and biosimilars) and devices; and Compliance Consulting, which works with customers as an extension of their own quality assurance department to provide QA program management, including scheduling, preparing for and conducting audits, preparing and finalizing audit reports, reviewing audit responses and reconciliation, issuing audit certificates, and more. Cenduit Introduces New Clinical Trial Supply Simulation and Forecasting Service Cenduit has introduced a new study simulation and forecasting service that will enable clinical trial sites to better plan and control supplies for their patients. When integrated with Cenduit’s interactive response technology (IRT) services, the new service will give sponsors complete confidence in their clinical supply chain. “Clinical trials are more complex than ever and a robust and reliable clinical trial supply strategy is vital to study success,” said Jogin Desai, Cenduit CEO. “The simulation and forecasting models, integrated with the patient randomization and drug allocation services inherent in our IRT systems, allow the complete coordination of procurement, packaging and logistics, with supply requirements from the sites themselves continuously factored in.” Mr. Desai says the new system helps further minimize the risk of drug supply overage and drug outages at sites and accelerates drug development through increased supply chain productivity. The system also allows clinical trial supply coordinators to test different supply scenarios before implementing them, and to identify in advance the risks associated with any supply strategy. “By integrating forecasting and simulation parameters into the IRT system, patients will receive the right treatment on time, every time and at the lowest cost,” he adds. Janssen R&D Establishes Global Cross-Pharmaceutical Clinical Trial Investigator Databank Janssen Research & Development has established a global cross-pharmaceutical Investigator Databank designed to improve efficiencies of industry-sponsored clinical trials. Merck and Eli Lilly and Company are the first two companies to join Janssen in this effort. The new Investigator Databank, established as part of this novel industry collaboration, serves as a one-stop repository where key information about clinical trial sites, such as infrastructure and Good Clinical Practice (GCP) training records, is housed. This allows participating pharmaceutical companies to reduce time-consuming and sometimes redundant administrative work involved in identifying appropriate clinical trial sites. At the outset of every clinical trial, pharmaceutical companies initiate clinical trial site selection, prequalification, and GCP training, which can be paperwork-heavy and time-consuming for trial sponsors and investigators alike. By housing critical information about investigators and trial sites in one place, the databank will reduce time, cost, and duplicative efforts, making it easier for companies to identify appropriate trial sites and investigators for future clinical trials. Investigator sites that have opted-in to data sharing will have their relevant information accessible to pharmaceutical companies participating in the collaboration. This databank will not include any patient data. “The current clinical trial environment is inefficient, costly, and unsustainable,” says Andreas Koester, M.D., Ph.D., head, clinical trial innovation/external alliances, Janssen Research & Development. “The Investigator Databank can help expedite the process to achieve our most important goal — to deliver high-quality, effective, and novel medicines to the patients who are waiting for them. We are enthusiastic about working with other industry leaders to collectively apply our expertise, capabilities and shared passion for advancing science and improving lives.” Earlier this year, Janssen joined nine other companies to launch TransCelerate BioPharma Inc., the largest initiative of its kind, which aims to identify and overcome common drug development challenges to improve the quality of clinical studies and to bring new medicines to patients faster. The initiative identified the centralization of site prequalification and training as one of five key projects, and the Janssen-led Investigator Databank project will serve as a foundation for the TransCelerate initiative. Perceptive Informatics, an e-clinical solutions provider and a subsidiary of Parexel, has opened a customer care office in Shanghai to service biopharmaceutical researchers in China and Taiwan who are using Perceptive’s technology solutions. The launch further strengthens Parexel’s footprint in Asia and demonstrates its long-term commitment to accelerating drug development in the region. Perceptive’s customer care office staff are responsible for supporting clinical studies using ClinPhone RTSM (randomization and trial supply management) and Datalabs EDC software and services, and are the first point of contact for clinical site staff, CRAs, and sponsors that have an IVR/IWR system questions on a live study. All staff in Shanghai will be bilingual Mandarin/English speakers, with Mandarin being their native first language. In other Parexel related news, the global biopharmaceutical services provider, has establisehd an alliance with the National Taiwan University Hospital (NTUH). Under the agreement, Parexel and NTUH will collaborate to provide drug development services in Taiwan. WorldCare Clinical, an imaging CRO, has announced new locations in Brazil, Dubai, Poland, Spain, and Singapore. The company is expanding its 24/7 technical support to global sites by working with a pre-existing network of physicians who are already experts in managing radiology and clinical data for independent review. WorldCare has an additional network of representatives in Eastern and Western Europe, the Middle East, and Asia-Pacific.