Paving the way for patient-centricity in 2024

AI in life sciences
Brad Bailey, Senior Vice President & US General Manager at Genmab
Brad Bailey, Senior Vice President & U.S. General Manager at Genmab

Brad Bailey is Senior Vice President and U.S. General Manager for Genmab, a global biotechnology company at the forefront of discovering, developing, and delivering antibody-based therapeutics for cancer and other serious diseases. Driven by opportunities to challenge and improve the status quo, Brad has dedicated his career to work that positively impacts patients’ lives.

At Genmab, Brad established the company’s first-ever commercialization organization in the U.S. and oversaw the launches of the company’s first two owned medicines. Prior to joining Genmab, Brad spent more than 25 years across the healthcare industry, with focus in specialty biopharma, oncology, and other serious diseases. 

3 strategies for driving patient-centricity in 2024

The past few years have been pivotal for the life sciences industry, with the proliferation of machine learning and artificial intelligence (AI) and the rapid acceleration of scientific advancements and collaborations reshaping the landscape in ways big and small. Amidst these changes, the patient has emerged as the ultimate disruptor, challenging organizations to rethink what it truly means to be “patient-first” in a constantly evolving and increasingly digital world.

When I joined Genmab in 2020, we were on the cusp of a major transformation as we set out to bring our own medicines directly to patients for the first time after more than two decades focused on research and advancing antibody-based science. We had the unique—and undoubtedly challenging—opportunity to build a new type of commercialization organization in an industry that was changing faster than ever before. While our industry continues to evolve, our experience has revealed several learnings about what it takes to deliver for patients that can help organizations position themselves for a successful year ahead:

1. Lead through listening

As life sciences organizations, patients are trusting us with their health—and we owe it to them to put their needs and well-being above all else. This means actively listening to their voices and allowing their insights to inform our decision-making, so our work is not only focused on innovative medicines that improve health, but also anticipating and addressing patients’ needs throughout their treatment journey. Importantly, this process must include uncovering and addressing barriers that may prevent certain patients from accessing medicines, as innovation only brings value if patients have access to it.     

At Genmab, a company rooted in science and inspired by patients, creating a Patient Advisory Council has been instrumental in expanding our impact. The insights we’ve gained from patients can guide us in many ways, including clinical development, how we conduct our clinical trials, and supporting patients and their care partners. 

2. Embrace change

Adapting to market dynamics and the evolving needs of patients and healthcare providers is essential, but incremental adjustments may not be enough. Over time, these incremental changes can lead to stronger silos, inefficient operations, and falling behind current trends. To best serve patients, we must recognize when our existing foundation is holding us back and be willing to make transformational changes to our organizations.

One of the biggest gaps that can grow is between research and development and commercialization. That’s why, at Genmab, we designed our organization to ensure strong connectivity throughout our entire process, from discovery through to commercialization, with the goal of bringing medicines to patients faster.

3. Use technology as a human enabler

There’s no denying the power of technology to improve the way we work, communicate, and deliver better experiences to healthcare providers and patients. In fact, a study from the American Medical Association showed that the percentage of physicians who feel digital health tools are an advantage for patient care grew from 85% in 2016 to 93% in 2022. However, as organizations continue to invest in technologies like AI and machine learning, it’s important to remember that technology is a tool that enhances human capabilities, not a replacement for human interaction and decision-making.

By embracing technology as a tool that empowers individuals, we can leverage its potential to improve efficiency, augment skills, and create more personalized experiences for care teams and patients. This requires organizations to invest in their workforce alongside their systems, establishing training programs and governance to cultivate a digitally savvy workforce.

Let’s make 2024 the year of decisive action, where leaders in the life sciences industry wholeheartedly embrace patient-centricity. By actively listening to and collaborating with patients, challenging the status quo, and harnessing the combined power of people and technology, we can make a tangible impact on the lives of patients.

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