Welcome!

News Feed Item

IMS Health Study: New Wave of Technology Drives Breakthrough Approaches in Life Sciences Commercial Operations

Life sciences companies are aggressively embracing new technology-driven approaches to commercialize their products and reduce operating costs, according to a new report issued today by the IMS Institute for Healthcare Informatics. The current technology wave in life sciences – including cloud-based business intelligence applications and storage, embedded analytics and systems integration – has the potential to drive transformational change over the next three years in overall healthcare system efficiency and the effectiveness of treatments. The availability and adoption of secure, healthcare-specific tools and services are key to accelerating that opportunity and deriving greater value from new, expanded sources of health information to optimize patient outcomes.

The study – Riding the Information Technology Wave in Life Sciences: Priorities, Pitfalls and Promise – found that life sciences companies are aggressively shifting their technology-based approaches to align cross-functional activities, optimize their organizations and improve the effectiveness and agility of commercial teams. In addition, new investment is being focused on enabling greater patient engagement.

The report cites findings from an IMS Institute survey of decision makers in IT, marketing, sales, operations and management from 70 life sciences organizations who were asked about their current and planned use of new IT solutions. Overall, respondents expect continued cost reductions across the industry, and 40 percent pointed to planned cuts of more than 10 percent in their organizations during the next three years. In addition, 74 percent of survey participants are looking to derive greater value from the influx of healthcare information that includes anonymized Electronic Medical Records (EMR) and other real-world data. New investments in a range of commercial operations applications, such as customer relationship management, social media or integrated multi-channel marketing solutions, were cited by more than 70 percent of respondents as a priority.

“Realizing the full benefit from new technologies will be a high priority for all life sciences companies as commercialization approaches are revised amid changing customer demands and a growing need for efficiency,” said Murray Aitken, executive director of the IMS Institute for Healthcare Informatics. “Applications that are healthcare-specific, cloud-based, integrated, secure and analytically powerful will yield substantial advantages to these organizations, and ultimately to patients and the health system overall.”

The report’s key findings include the following:

  • The largest global pharmaceutical companies will need to reduce combined operating costs by $36 billion annually through 2017 to maintain their operating margins and current levels of R&D activities. Pressure on operating margins is expected to grow as companies face rising costs at the same time drug prices are being constrained or reduced. With an estimated R&D cost inflation rate of 5 percent annually, organizations will need to reduce other operating costs to maintain margins. While the source of cost cutting will vary by company, a primary focus likely will be on sales, marketing and administration costs, which amount to nearly 30 percent of net sales. Of those surveyed by the IMS Institute, 87 percent indicated that their commercial organizations are being optimized through a range of approaches, including selective insourcing and outsourcing, resource shifting and implementation of previously unavailable technology-based solutions.
  • Companies see interoperability of technology systems as an urgent and critical need. As technology systems and applications within life sciences companies have proliferated during the past decade, they often have remained siloed and inefficient. Integrated systems, cited by 85 percent of survey respondents as a need for optimizing their commercial organizations, are increasingly viewed as a means to improve workflow speed, eliminate conflicting data interpretations across departments, and reduce the cost of vendor teams managing manual data handoffs. Life sciences organizations are seeking pre-built, cloud-based application suites as a means to achieve these enterprise-wide system efficiencies.
  • Life sciences companies are shifting their primary data storage to the cloud, and investing in new sales and marketing-related applications. Due to the sensitive nature of healthcare data, the adoption of remote, cloud-based technologies by life sciences companies has been slow compared to other industries. Organizations are embracing efforts by cloud providers to accelerate progress in establishing and maintaining secure and compliant environments for the collection and storage of health information. Seventy percent of participants expressed a need to utilize third-party, cloud-based applications.
  • Technology is enabling the healthcare industry to derive greater value from Big Data. Large, connected anonymized patient datasets are already accessible for analysis in some countries with national health systems; in other countries, the pooling of EMR, claims and other data sets will be essential to creating repositories representative of patient populations. In the U.S., some hospital systems are collaborating to pool data for analysis, with the aim of refining treatment algorithms to achieve the best possible patient outcomes. The ability of life sciences companies to benefit from these data sources currently is limited due to the lack of consistent formats and privacy standards among cloud-based service providers. Progress is being made to facilitate access to shared repositories in the cloud that can be used by multiple stakeholders to examine the burden of illness and understand the value of medicines.
  • Analytic systems designed to interpret and create actionable insights have not kept pace with the abundant and growing amounts of data generated or accessed by life sciences companies. As competition among life sciences companies intensifies, and the mix of new medicines skews toward those with relatively small target patient populations, analytic systems that help bring medicines to the right patients and their physicians are essential. Implementation of these systems accelerates the improvement of health outcomes while also bringing more efficiency to the entire health system. Querying large, observational data sets, however, requires clinical expertise that is often highly specialized. Cloud applications that translate complex disease measures into pre-built definitions enable non-expert users to derive greater insights.
  • New mobile applications for both patients and physicians are seen as increasingly important for strengthening healthcare engagement. As life sciences companies focus on innovative ways to bring value and services to their customers, mobile applications are likely to play a greater role in keeping patients more engaged in their own healthcare, facilitating communication between patients and healthcare professionals, and delivering targeted, helpful information to physicians and payers. Nearly 60 percent of survey respondents rated patient apps as extremely or very important to address commercial challenges, while 69 percent similarly rated investments in physician apps. Currently, apps for physicians and other healthcare providers can offer drug-agnostic disease education and training to help guide decision making, as well as dosing calculators and web-based access to information about specific drugs.

The full version of the report, including a detailed description of the methodology, is available at www.theimsinstitute.org. It can also be downloaded as an app via iTunes at https://itunes.apple.com/app/ims-institute/id625347542. The study was produced independently as a public service, without industry or government funding.

About the IMS Institute for Healthcare Informatics

The IMS Institute for Healthcare Informatics provides key policy setters and decision makers in the global health sector with unique and transformational insights into healthcare dynamics derived from granular analysis of information. It is a research-driven entity with a worldwide reach that collaborates with external healthcare experts from across academia and the public and private sectors to objectively apply IMS Health’s proprietary global information and analytical assets. More information about the IMS Institute can be found at: http://www.theimsinstitute.org.

About IMS Health

IMS Health is a leading global information and technology services company providing clients in the healthcare industry with comprehensive solutions to measure and improve their performance. By applying sophisticated analytics and proprietary application suites hosted on the IMS One intelligent cloud, the company connects more than 10 petabytes of complex healthcare data on diseases, treatments, costs and outcomes to help its clients run their operations more efficiently. Drawing on information from 100,000 suppliers, and on insights from more than 45 billion healthcare transactions processed annually, IMS Health’s 9,500 professionals drive results for over 5,000 healthcare clients globally. Customers include pharmaceutical, consumer health and medical device manufacturers and distributors, providers, payers, government agencies, policymakers, researchers and the financial community.

As a global leader in protecting individual patient privacy, IMS Health uses anonymous healthcare data to deliver critical, real-world disease and treatment insights. These insights help biotech and pharmaceutical companies, medical researchers, government agencies, payers and other healthcare stakeholders to identify unmet treatment needs and understand the effectiveness and value of pharmaceutical products in improving overall health outcomes.

More Stories By Business Wire

Copyright © 2009 Business Wire. All rights reserved. Republication or redistribution of Business Wire content is expressly prohibited without the prior written consent of Business Wire. Business Wire shall not be liable for any errors or delays in the content, or for any actions taken in reliance thereon.

Latest Stories
The speed of software changes in growing and large scale rapid-paced DevOps environments presents a challenge for continuous testing. Many organizations struggle to get this right. Practices that work for small scale continuous testing may not be sufficient as the requirements grow. In his session at DevOps Summit, Marc Hornbeek, Sr. Solutions Architect of DevOps continuous test solutions at Spirent Communications, explained the best practices of continuous testing at high scale, which is rele...
Web Real-Time Communication APIs have quickly revolutionized what browsers are capable of. In addition to video and audio streams, we can now bi-directionally send arbitrary data over WebRTC's PeerConnection Data Channels. With the advent of Progressive Web Apps and new hardware APIs such as WebBluetooh and WebUSB, we can finally enable users to stitch together the Internet of Things directly from their browsers while communicating privately and securely in a decentralized way.
Hardware virtualization and cloud computing allowed us to increase resource utilization and increase our flexibility to respond to business demand. Docker Containers are the next quantum leap - Are they?! Databases always represented an additional set of challenges unique to running workloads requiring a maximum of I/O, network, CPU resources combined with data locality.
"Matrix is an ambitious open standard and implementation that's set up to break down the fragmentation problems that exist in IP messaging and VoIP communication," explained John Woolf, Technical Evangelist at Matrix, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at @ThingsExpo, held Nov 4–6, 2014, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA.
"A lot of times people will come to us and have a very diverse set of requirements or very customized need and we'll help them to implement it in a fashion that you can't just buy off of the shelf," explained Nick Rose, CTO of Enzu, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at 18th Cloud Expo, held June 7-9, 2016, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY.
As software becomes more and more complex, we, as software developers, have been splitting up our code into smaller and smaller components. This is also true for the environment in which we run our code: going from bare metal, to VMs to the modern-day Cloud Native world of containers, schedulers and micro services. While we have figured out how to run containerized applications in the cloud using schedulers, we've yet to come up with a good solution to bridge the gap between getting your contain...
Web Real-Time Communication APIs have quickly revolutionized what browsers are capable of. In addition to video and audio streams, we can now bi-directionally send arbitrary data over WebRTC's PeerConnection Data Channels. With the advent of Progressive Web Apps and new hardware APIs such as WebBluetooh and WebUSB, we can finally enable users to stitch together the Internet of Things directly from their browsers while communicating privately and securely in a decentralized way.
"We host and fully manage cloud data services, whether we store, the data, move the data, or run analytics on the data," stated Kamal Shannak, Senior Development Manager, Cloud Data Services, IBM, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at 18th Cloud Expo, held June 7-9, 2016, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY.
Who are you? How do you introduce yourself? Do you use a name, or do you greet a friend by the last four digits of his social security number? Assuming you don’t, why are we content to associate our identity with 10 random digits assigned by our phone company? Identity is an issue that affects everyone, but as individuals we don’t spend a lot of time thinking about it. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Ben Klang, Founder & President of Mojo Lingo, discussed the impact of technology on identity. Sho...
Information technology (IT) advances are transforming the way we innovate in business, thereby disrupting the old guard and their predictable status-quo. It’s creating global market turbulence. Industries are converging, and new opportunities and threats are emerging, like never before. So, how are savvy chief information officers (CIOs) leading this transition? Back in 2015, the IBM Institute for Business Value conducted a market study that included the findings from over 1,800 CIO interviews ...
"Operations is sort of the maturation of cloud utilization and the move to the cloud," explained Steve Anderson, Product Manager for BMC’s Cloud Lifecycle Management, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at 18th Cloud Expo, held June 7-9, 2016, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY.
Due of the rise of Hadoop, many enterprises are now deploying their first small clusters of 10 to 20 servers. At this small scale, the complexity of operating the cluster looks and feels like general data center servers. It is not until the clusters scale, as they inevitably do, when the pain caused by the exponential complexity becomes apparent. We've seen this problem occur time and time again. In his session at Big Data Expo, Greg Bruno, Vice President of Engineering and co-founder of StackIQ...
"I think that everyone recognizes that for IoT to really realize its full potential and value that it is about creating ecosystems and marketplaces and that no single vendor is able to support what is required," explained Esmeralda Swartz, VP, Marketing Enterprise and Cloud at Ericsson, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at @ThingsExpo, held June 7-9, 2016, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY.
The buzz continues for cloud, data analytics and the Internet of Things (IoT) and their collective impact across all industries. But a new conversation is emerging - how do companies use industry disruption and technology enablers to lead in markets undergoing change, uncertainty and ambiguity? Organizations of all sizes need to evolve and transform, often under massive pressure, as industry lines blur and merge and traditional business models are assaulted and turned upside down. In this new da...
"We got started as search consultants. On the services side of the business we have help organizations save time and save money when they hit issues that everyone more or less hits when their data grows," noted Otis Gospodnetić, Founder of Sematext, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at @DevOpsSummit, held June 9-11, 2015, at the Javits Center in New York City.