With digital technologies rapidly transforming relationships among patients, healthcare providers (HCPs) and pharmaceutical companies, Aptus Health is adding to its portfolio of mobile-first and data-driven platforms to keep its life sciences clients at the forefront of these trends. The recent acquisition of EngagedMedia extends Aptus Health’s reach into medication adherence through patient communication based on pharmacy claim data.
Richard J. Morello, President of Global Life Sciences for Aptus Health, explained how adherence is critical not only for patient health but also for the pharmaceutical business. “Due to a variety of factors, many patients do not complete or refill their regimen as originally prescribed,” he noted. “Lost revenues due to patients who do not stay on a recommended therapy is significant — representing an estimated $200 billion to $250 billion.”
The acquisition of Atlanta-based EngagedMedia is a natural fit for Aptus Health. The company has developed an innovative approach to engaging patients at key points in their experience with a branded therapy through adherence tools, conveniences, education, and awareness programs. “With EngagedMedia, we identified a way to address the enduring challenge of non-adherence in a way that stays true to our mission of using digital, mobile and data-driven approaches,” said Morello.
EngagedMedia’s patented technology platform — EngagedPatient™ — delivers personalized mobile messaging based on real-time pharmacy claim data. EngagedPatient programs have yielded double-digit improvement in medication adherence and return-on-investment for more than 60 life sciences clients. To date, over 1.5 million people have enrolled in these programs.
The mobile-first EngagedPatient platform complements Aptus Health’s other healthcare consumer-facing digital engagement offerings, including its Tomorrow Networks division, which provides best-in-class geolocation mobile advertising campaigns for health and lifestyle brands. Since its acquisition by Aptus Health in 2014, the Tomorrow Networks business has grown considerably in the market. “We anticipate a similar growth rate for the EngagedMedia business for the next several years,” Morello added.
Supporting the New Ways Patients Manage Their Health
The use of smartphones is becoming ubiquitous, with approximately 229 million devices in the hands of U.S. consumers today, according to eMarketer. EngagedMedia embraced this revolution almost 10 years ago with a patented technology that provides people with personalized, actionable information about their prescriptions, making it easier to start and stay on their therapies.
EngagedMedia has access to up to 450 fields of claim data per patient to develop these timely, personalized messages to patients who enroll in their programs. The depth of data and real-time connection with events at the pharmacy is critical to help drive patient behavior. For example, on average, people enrolled in EngagedPatient programs refill their prescriptions at a rate 35% higher and stay on their therapy 27% longer compared to unenrolled patients. This in turn provides life sciences companies the opportunity to reclaim lost revenues while improving health outcomes and delivering a positive user experience with a branded therapy. Of course, the platform is carefully designed to protect the privacy of patients’ sensitive health and personal information.
“What differentiates us from others is not just the greater depth of patient data, connection with pharmacy events and mobile capabilities, but the combination of those with our experience and expertise,” said Hoss Sooudi, General Manager of EngagedMedia. “It’s marrying those three industries and zeroing in on what makes a patient-engagement program, or campaign, most effective in each of those respects that makes us better.”
Sooudi predicted that consumer interest in managing their own health care will remain strong. “The good news is there are technologies and platforms like ours that can make the responsibility less heavy. This puts a little more power and capability in the hands of patients in simple ways,” he said.
Morello believes that the EngagedPatient platform has only just begun to penetrate the market because it provides value across the full lifecycle of a brand — from launch and the first few years on the market through sustainability before and after loss of exclusivity. “Adding EngagedMedia’s EngagedPatient platform to our product portfolio bridges the gap between awareness, activation and ongoing adherence, offering more opportunities to help people better manage their health and earning loyalty to our clients’ brands,” he said.