A Life in a Day had a truly insightful month in June 2023. Our Founder, Mark Doyle, spoke at the 4th Patient Centricity and Collaboration World Congress 2023 Europe on 1-2 June in London, and Managing Director, Kate Jackson, presented our immersive experiences at the 7th annual European Patients as Partners in Clinical Research conference. The creative team announced the launch of our new unique immersive experience – the life of a patient with eosinophilic esophagitis (EoE). A Life in a Day in June 2023 had a lot going on. Here are a few of our highlights!
Industry leaders discuss patient-centricity
There was no doubt that industry leaders are completely in agreement that the best decisions are made with patients’ input The 4th Patient Centricity and Collaboration World Congress 2023 Europe was held in London on 1-2 June to discuss all aspects of patient-centricity. Participants discussed the importance of patient-centred care and how to ensure patients are involved in all aspects of their healthcare.
Directors and representatives of popular pharmaceutical companies, global contract research organizations, advocacy groups and more, including A Life in a Day, Pfizer UK, Blueprint Medicines, Novartis, Evidera, Cancer Research UK, shared their insights into strategies and initiative that have taken to be more patient focused both at a strategic and operational level. Founder Mark Doyle was delighted to join an extensive panel of experts to share why A Life in a Day is one of the more innovative ways. During the Patient Centricity and Collaboration World Congress, participants were impressed with the idea of walking 24 hours in the shoes of patients.
Through the A Life in a Day experience life science professionals can live as a real patient through an immersive simulation. Mark uses his creative background to develop immersive experiences that bring the patient journey to life in a very emotive way.
The purpose of A Life in a Day is to help the pharmaceutical and healthcare industries understand the challenges and choices faced by patients daily. As a result of the experience, participants are encouraged to consider how the condition may affect their personal lives.
Mark and his creative team ensure all experiences truly reflect the real-world patient impact by conducting extensive interviews with patients, listening to their stories, and understanding their challenges.
“You must talk to patients constantly all the time. We also interview HCP’s, carers, and family members to ensure clinical accuracy”. added Mark Doyle.
A challenge of working within pharmaceuticals is that you do not regularly interact with actual patients.
“We think about patients, but do not actually see them,” said Geoff Rollason, Pfizer UK’s Patient Experience and Services Director.
Geoff Rollason expressed the view that patients should be fully integrated into the business and should play a leading role. Engaging end users is essential for a successful business.
“Only by including, involving and continuing to make patients central to everything we do will our business deliver its purpose of delivering breakthroughs that change patients’ lives,” said Geoff.
Patients as Partners
Later in the month, A Life in A Day attended the 7th annual European Patients as Partners in Clinical Research conference. Patients were the focus of the conference to find out how we can increase diverse representation, connect with a wide range of patient communities, and simplify clinical research for patients and physicians.
Patients as Partners is all about amplifying the patient voice and knowing how and when to listen to them.
Kate Jackson, the Managing Director of A Life in a Day, presented our innovative and unique programme centred on the patient’s life.
“Delighted to have been invited to highlight A Life in a Day at Patients as Partners Europe today #patientseu2023. Already benefitted from some very insightful and motivating presentations,” wrote Kate on LinkedIn.
A discussion of note at the event focused on how mostly all research and development teams and sites provide exceptional physical care but almost no psychological care. Currently, there is a significant gap in understanding and supporting this. That is why it is incredibly important to increase empathy, for providing better support for patients.
Marc Boutin, the Global Head of Patient Engagement at Novartis, shared that in his opinion “there is no truly patient-centered company”.
“Because people confuse thinking about patients as being patient-centric. While there is no one definition, generally people believe that patient-centeredness is about engaging with, understanding and co-creating with the patient community. In the end, it’s about doing “with” not “to” or “for.” I don’t believe that there’s any company that is in that space yet”, – said Marc
That said, he shared that within the life science industry, there are amazing, incredibly talented people who are making life-altering medicines.
The event was chaired by Victoria DiBiaso, Patient Informed Development & Health Value Translation at Sanofi, and she shared the definition of “patient-centricity” that Sanofi have developed.
“I think most people would recognise that if you ask someone, “What does patient centricity mean to you?”, everybody has their own way of articulating it. We felt it was important to have a single North Star of what it was that we recognized as a definition”, she said.
Victoria added that patient-centricity was about listening and translating those insights into actions that lead to the development of meaningful healthcare solutions for individuals.
New immersive experience: EoE
Our amazing creative team announced a launch of new unique immersive experience – the life of a patient with eosinophilic esophagitis (EoE). As with all A Life in a Day experiences it is built around the realities of the patients life and the impact on them and their loved ones.
During your experience, you will wake up, go to work, socialise with friends, spend time with your family and go to bed as normal – but for the duration, you will experience living with EoE whilst doing those things.
EoE is a chronic esophagus disease. EoE symptoms include heartburn, chest pain, difficulty swallowing, and feeling like food gets stuck in your throat.
This experience is designed to have an emotional impact. A Life in a Day is based on stories from real patients and focuses on the emotional impact of living with the condition.
A Life in a Day highlights the significant impact EoE has on every mealtime, every snack and how this influences every part of the patient’s life.
As the creator of the experience Beverley Bryant shared that EoE was shaping up to be very different to any condition. By talking to people with EoE, the creative team discovered the hidden story behind this condition.
“As I carried out my patient interviews, I was – as always – inspired by their stories. I was struck by their strength – quite often people live with EoE alongside other conditions – and their resilience – many people with EoE make instinctive adaptations to what and how they eat, which can have huge emotional and social impacts,” said Beverley.