LOOKING BEYOND SCIENTIFIC LITERATURE TO UNDERSTAND CLINICAL PRACTICE
Insights from the Sixsense Team – Inspiring a different way of thinking.
Over the years, we at Sixsense Strategy Group have worked across a wide range of therapeutic areas, developing business and medical strategies for our pharmaceutical and biotech clients, interacting both with cross functional pharmaceutical and healthcare professionals (HCPs).
Insight generation requires us to read scientific literature to gain an understanding of the disease area we are working with, including how the disease or condition is diagnosed, treated and managed. Speaking with HCPs we have learned that often what is published in scientific literature does not mirror clinical practice. In fact, not only have we observed differences between scientific literature and clinical practice, but also differences between regions and countries.
It is important to note that although scientific literature can provide guidance and recommendations for disease diagnosis, treatment and management, one must look beyond this. Each patient case is unique, often requiring a tailored approach influenced by several factors such as disease severity and whether underlying etiology is present. Consequently, many HCPs adopt an evidence-based medicine approach to their practice, integrating clinical experience and patient values with the best available published research.
Gaining insights as to how HCPs approach clinical practice cannot be undervalued, as this is integral for understanding a therapeutic area. For pharmaceutical companies it can inform how they speak with HCPs as well as how they develop clinically meaningful endpoints for trials.
One vehicle for gathering valuable HCP insights include well designed and executed strategic advisory boards. In addition to providing first-hand accounts of the reality of clinical practice, strategic advisory boards also shed light on HCP motivations for prescribing and administering therapies, in turn informing how medical strategies are designed.