As most of you know, I also blog on the Publicis D Healthcare site. Check out some of the topics discussed on the blog this week:
- Changes to the Pharma Code of Marketing Practice in Ireland: The Irish Pharmaceutical Healthcare Association (IPHA) has announced strict updates to its industry Code of Marketing Practice for the Pharmaceutical Industry.
- Video Consultations with Specialists Aid Treatment: The Archives of Dermatology this month published an interesting study on ‘teledermatology’ – the use of video conferencing to allow a primary care physician to ‘remote consult’ with a dermatologist – which had some interesting results.
- Pharmaceutical Sales Reps Gone Wild – A Docu-Spoof: Pharmaceutical sales is becoming a battle – survival of the fittest, the most engaging, those sales teams whose approach evolves to meet the needs of physicians. How are pharmaceutical reps coping in a rapidly changing environment? Check out this funny docu-spoof.
- Pharmacists warn of dangers of using internet for health advice -
As the recession rumbles on Irish consumers are turning to the internet to self diagnose and seek advice on health conditions. A nationwide survey of 1,000 adults carried out by Quinn Healthcare revealed “almost half of Irish people (46%) find that the cost of attending their GP encourages them to consult the Internet for medical diagnosis“.
The National Consumer Agency puts the average cost per GP visit at an average of €51…prohibitive for the 60% of women and 50% of men under 44 who are turning to “Dr Google” for information on health issues.
Other stats from the survey include:
- 45% would use a phone service or web chat if GPs offered this service, with Dublin respondents being most positive on these methods of consultation (52%)
- On average 35% of the population believe the Internet is a trustworthy source of medical information, with young men being the biggest believers (48%)
- 53% of females aged between 35-44 use the Internet for a second opinion and as a tool to challenge GP diagnosis
- More than 55% of younger males, and also 54% of women aged between 35-44 would consult the Internet rather than their GP if suffering from an embarrassing medical problem
The Irish Pharmacy Union (IPU) posted a statement in response to this research, saying: “We are concerned at the growing trend for people using the internet to self diagnose. The information online may not always be correct and your symptoms could worsen if you are not properly diagnosed. We encourage people to drop in and ask their pharmacist first for advice.”
The IPU ‘Ask your Pharmacist First’ campaign has been running for some months now with a series of radio adverts and the launch of their website ‘watercooleradvice.ie‘. On the interactive site you can type in any health topic and the three ‘watercooler experts’ will give you their advice. The idea being to underscore that “On the internet, everyone’s an “expert” and you should ask a qualified healthcare professional (such as your pharmacist) for advice.
The most interesting stat that jumps out of this research for me is the fact that women are using the internet as a virtual ‘second opinion’, gathering information to challenge their GP’s initial diagnosis. This trend suggests training healthcare professionals in communications techniques to allow them to effectively manage the expectations of ‘e-patients’ armed with print outs from the internet will become a vital element of their professional development.
I doubt that anything will dissuade consumers from seeking information online…convenience, curiosity and cost savings will mean that the numbers of people visiting “Dr Google” is only going to increase. The focus of those operating in the healthcare sector, (the Department of Health, healthcare professionals, advocacy groups and pharmaceutical companies), should be on ensuring that accurate and engaging health education content is available for all conditions and that this is readily accessible online.
The e-patient is not going away and so healthcare must adapt to provide e-treatment.
Johnson and Johnson Gyno have created quite an interesting women’s health initiative. They’ve developed an integrated film campaign for the Chinese market which drives traffic to a microsite, www.xiaov.com (littleV.com). There ladies can log onto an online diary written by consumers about the most intimate of women’s issues – a diary written as the voice of a vagina.
Click here to view the video on Adsoftheworld.com.
‘A spoonful of sugar makes the medicine go down‘…that may work in the rose-tinted world of Mary Poppins but in reality encouraging people to take their medicine is a task that can’t be overcome with a song. A WHO report estimated that between 30 and 50% of medicines prescribed for long-term illness are not taken as directed.
Healthcare professionals and pharmaceutical marketing and PR people spend a significant amount of time developing strategies to deal with medication non-adherence (i.e. taking your medicine as frequently as you’re supposed to and for as long as you’re supposed to). With that in mind, this US infographic created by Steven Wilkins, Author and Owner of Mind the Gap, is quite interesting. It aims to “describe the ‘disconnect’ that often occurs between physicians and patients and the impact of adherence”. With stats like doctors spending just 49 seconds telling a patient what they need to know about a new medication, it provides an interesting insight into the medicine compliance issue.
The American Cancer Society and the Texas Dept. of Health is running a campaign at the moment to encourage people to picture themselves without cigarettes (yesquit.org). They’ve rolled out TV, radio and print ads and have also launched this clever billboard which features lungs that get a little bit healthier as the weeks pass by – just as they would if you quit smoking.
I pity the guy who has to re-paint the ad every two weeks!
Connect with me
- Teddy Has an Operation and I Get Chills
- Clever Usain Bolt Campaign from Durex
- Social Media Revolution – The Parody
- Bottled Water Ad Like You’ve Never Seen Before (video)
- Nobody Hanging Out on Google+?
- 60 seconds in Social Media [Infographic]
- Cyber Flashmob Attacks WSJ Facebook Page
- Is the social media novelty wearing off?
Say What Now!?
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