Biopharma and medical device companies engage real-world data (RWD) at all stages of R&D and commercialization, with some sources — such as labs, electronic health records (EHRs) and disease registries — typically seeing the most utilization.
But according to a new survey from Merative and BioPharma Dive, some previously underprioritized sources are seeing much more attention, with inputs such as provider identification data, mortality data, and closed claims data growing by 2026. Additionally, organizations are placing a higher value on data completeness and longitudinality than real-time access or international representation.
The survey included responses from 150 executives from small and midsize biopharma and medical device companies. Respondents shared their perspectives surrounding RWD trends, opportunities and future predictions. Now available in a free downloadable report, those insights indicate what organizations are demanding from a rapidly growing RWD vendor ecosystem.
Complete, Comprehensive Data Sought the Most
The report confirmed that the use of RWD is continuing to increase throughout early and late-stage trials, and also during launch and beyond. Survey respondents were also asked about which factors they want most from RWD. The majority of them — 76% — said they valued data completeness above all other attributes, followed by the length of longitudinal patient information and U.S. national representation.
The majority also said they would be willing to wait a few months to make sure data was highly accurate — indicating a strong preference for data quality and integrity over speed.
These survey results point to the manufacturers’ recognition that quality requires rigor, which can take time,” the report states. “The best databases — such as MarketScan by Merative — employ a meticulous process of ingesting and curating data along with comprehensive quality control. The time and effort spent refining the data is worthwhile because the resulting dataset is complete and accurate.
Organizations Feel Pressure to Consolidate Vendors
More than 3 in 4 executives said their companies rely on multiple partners that specialize in different data types, indicating an expansive and disparate RWD vendor ecosystem. However, 90% of respondents said they will probably feel pressure to consolidate those relationships by 2028.
In organizations’ quest for operational efficiency, vendor consolidation is a common strategy to streamline workflows and cut costs. However, given the importance of RWD to generate real-world evidence, companies may want to be more selective about their choice of partner. Multi-faceted vendors that offer data, expertise and analytical services could be the most in-demand as this vendor ecosystem evolves, the report stated.
Download the full report to explore key RWD trends, opportunities, and future predictions.
MarketScan by Merative provides deidentified, longitudinal, patient-level closed claims and specialty data for 293M+ patients sourced directly from a diverse pool of payers. Industry-leading researchers rely on MarketScan to derive valuable insights pertaining to health economics and outcomes research, treatment patterns, and disease progression across the industry resulting in more than 4,500 peer-reviewed manuscripts. Learn more at merative.com/real-world-evidence
Merative is a data, analytics and technology partner for the health industry, including providers, health plans, employers, life sciences companies and governments. With trusted technology and human expertise, Merative works with clients to drive real progress. Merative helps clients orient information and insights around the people they serve to improve decision-making and performance. Merative, formerly IBM Watson Health, became a new standalone company as part of Francisco Partners in 2022. Learn more at www.merative.com