Patient empowerment is a key theme in the emerging healthcare scene, and a new campaign looks to encourage patient self-advocacy.
Clara Health, a clinical trial software platform, is launching “Patients Have Power” this week, with sponsors and participants that include pharma companies Takeda, Johnson & Johnson's Janssen and Amylyx Pharmaceuticals. The campaign will kick off with an afternoon Twitter chat and several live events around the Boston area.
“Patients own their healthcare journey, from making treatment decisions to deciding if they want to go into a clinical trial,” Lilly Stairs, Clara's head of patient advocacy and an autoimmune disease patient, said. “We often hear from patients that they feel uncomfortable pushing back or questioning what their doctor says. Or they’re not being presented with all the options. So this is, in part, to encourage them to do their own research and take matters into their own hands.”
While Clara Health maintains a clinical trial database and helps patients explore, find and potentially enroll in studies, the new campaign is meant to be a broader push to remind patients of the power they do have—even when it doesn’t feel that way. Twitter questions and topics for the chat include general discussion points, such as, "What is the need for patient empowerment?," "Share a time you’ve seen patient empowerment result in better care," and "How can patients, caregivers and allies come together to give patients power?" Pharma partners will sit in on the chat to help answer questions, Stairs said.
“Whether or not patients enroll in a clinical trial or find another option, it’s extremely important for them to be looking for that and to know what all their options are and hear from as many people as possible so that they make that decision themselves or along with their doctor,” Clara CEO Evan Ehrenberg said.
As part of the campaign, Clara Health plans to continue to run monthly Twitter chats, keep up the #PatientsHavePower rally on social media and look to organize more in-person events. Boston, where the campaign's live kickoff events are taking place, has become a noted destination for disease and patient awareness marketing thanks to its heavy concentration of biotech and pharma companies.