5 November 2020
Digital Health Event 2020 | Key takeaways from the industry experts
Industry experts working at the forefront of drug development, devices and digital health shared their lessons learned delivering virtual trials during the Covid-19 pandemic at Cambridge Cognition’s fourth annual Digital Health Event. Catch up on the key takeways from this thought-leading discussion.
Industry experts working at the forefront of drug development, devices and digital health recently came together to share their lessons learned delivering virtual trials during the Covid-19 pandemic at Cambridge Cognition’s fourth annual Digital Health Event. Here are some of the speakers' key takeways from this thought-leading discussion:
Dr Jordan Brayanov, Digital Strategy Lead, Takeda Pharmaceuticals
Pharma companies should work collaboratively with digital companies – device manufacturers (like Empatica) and specialized vendors (like Cambridge Cognition) – to establish common use cases, clinical methods, measurement standards and requirements for specific diseases and patient populations. Such efforts will benefit all patients and make it easier for all of us to bring medicines into the world.
Pharma must support the development of new technologies, devices, and measurements as part of patient care. We can’t sit back and wait for this to happen on its own.
We also must encourage companies maintaining existing infrastructures to open those up to new opportunities and allow new data to flow through existing data pipelines. This will substantially reduce the overhead, especially for small companies, in bringing new tech to market.
Dr Chelsea Trengrove, Director of Business Development, Empatica
From a devices standpoint, adopt digital endpoints early. The earlier you engage with the FDA the sooner new uses can be approved for your specific trial, either to bolster the endpoints you are already using or even to replace them.
Ensure data capture is believable and traceable. Meet the standards of the industry and regulatory agencies, as well as offer the possibility for retrospective analyses with future algorithms.
One of the most valuable features of digital platforms is a continuous, objective, and real-world view of a study subject’s health: from vitals to sleep patterns.
This year has demonstrated the need for devices, and I think in the future, we’re going to see some exciting new endpoints and biomarkers coming out of these types of platforms.
Dr Francesca Cormack, Director of Research & Innovation, Cambridge Cognition
Digital technologies don’t just give us a way of making measurements feasible in a decentralised setting, they don’t just have operational benefits, they also can provide us with really interesting insights into what’s actually going on with patients. A holistic view of patients’ functioning which we wouldn’t necessarily get if we relied solely on a single snapshot of performance.
I think this has the ability to unlock some unique insights, and if I think about the future one of the things I hope we will see is the true value of these tools revealed with their continued and increased adoption.
Dr Stephen Friend, President and Co-Founder, 4YouandMe
Beware of those who journey without adequate labels and context. It’s not until you carry out a new study that you become aware of those unknown unknowns. We have just missed our share of studies that didn’t anchor in validated endpoints. Cambridge Cognition is now helping us with this.
Beware of entangled causes and consequences. Remember something can be a cause and an effect.
Beware of mapping high resolution digital data onto pre-existing diagnoses. Powerful individual data can become aggregated into a group and then sometimes projected onto a wobbly diagnosis. Often signal and not noise.
Beware of those who caution against “friction” for fear of adherence compliance. We’ve worked really hard this last year to break that, focussing on how to treat participants in studies and centring on communities.
You can catch up on the full event recording here: