Kentucky: Microcosm for National Healthcare Debate
November 9, 2015
Kentucky has always been the best state in America for bluegrass, horse racing and bourbon. But Kentucky is also gaining national recognition in an unexpected area: becoming a microcosm for the national debate over Obamacare. On Tuesday night, voters elected Republican Matt Bevin to succeed Democrat Steve Beshear as the state’s next governor. Beshear created...
The Coming Storm
November 6, 2015
A sizzling summer of media coverage of rising drug prices – fueled by the made-for-TV news about Turing Pharmaceuticals’ 5000% price hike for Daraprim, a drug approved by the FDA in 1953 to treat malaria and toxoplasmosis – is turning into an autumn of activity on Capitol Hill. As a result, the long-brewing debate over...
What Really Scares Me This Halloween
October 30, 2015
Halloween’s calling, and my heart’s in the right place—for a person living with Type 1 diabetes, that is. You see, despite my compliance to carb-counting and almost hourly blood tests, I’ve deep-rooted affection for this holiday of camp and kitsch and candy. But just like Cinderella (my all-time favorite princess-in-waiting if not Halloween costume), I...
Back to the Future Kind of Had it Right
October 21, 2015
We’ve arrived at the future. Or, at least the one that film classic Back to the Future Part II predicted would happen today, October 21, 2015. It’s not easy to predict the future. That’s probably why we’re so bad at it. Yet with almost 26 years to see what came true since the film’s release...
A Healthy Debate – What the Candidates Are Saying
October 15, 2015
U.S. presidential candidates from both parties have now held at least one nationally televised debate and healthcare played a prominent role in both. We ran a quick analysis of the most current Republican and Democratic debate transcripts, and some of what was said really surprised us. Think you know what’s what? Try this fast quiz:...
Can Technology Bridge the Gap Between Knowing and Doing?
October 14, 2015
Chronic disease prevention isn’t sexy. Its core tenets induce eye rolls with their basic simplicity: “Eat better. Exercise more.” Ugh, how boring. Isn’t there some pill I can take to stave off a heart attack or cancer? A one-time shot to make me diabetes-proof? Healthcare providers and public health professionals have long struggled with how...
The Five Healthcare Issues That Will Dominate the 2016 Election
September 28, 2015
Is Donald Trump’s hair real or fake? Is Hillary Clinton’s server clean or not? We’re as fascinated by these questions as anyone else and will debate these questions and more in our next blog post. As we trudge through September, October and then another 12 months until the election, we’ve begrudgingly accepted that the political...
Speaking of Health – How the 21st Century Cures Act Impacts Healthcare Communications
July 10, 2015
The pace of change in healthcare is breathtaking. There are new ways to treat, new ways to research, new ways to pay for care, new ways to access care and new ways to communicate about it. Yet, in too many ways, the way we, as a nation, regulate remains a 20th century model plagued by...
SCOTUS Saves POTUS: How the ACA Verdict Affects Healthcare
June 25, 2015
Today’s 6-3 decision by the Supreme Court of the United States (SCOTUS) hands a huge victory to Barack Obama, the President of the United States (POTUS), locking in place one of the President’s signature public policy initiatives of his two terms in the White House. While the political debate and legal challenges to the Affordable...
Social Media at ASCO: Weekend in Review
June 1, 2015
Day 4 at the American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO) conference in Chicago brings with it some weary attendees and followers. Hundreds of abstracts have been presented on a range of cancers and generated some large conversation volumes, both in McCormick Place and online. On Friday, we previewed three topics and trends we’re watching at the meeting....
Sweet Home Chicago: What We’ll Be Watching at ASCO
May 29, 2015
Chicago, get ready. You’re about to have a lot more doctors, business executives and journalists. Thousands of them are gathering in the Windy City for the annual American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO), one of the largest oncology meetings in the world. While the surge will be temporary, the research and insights shared by oncologists...
Are We Too Optimistic About Progress in Cancer?
April 29, 2015
A giddy smile has taken hold of the faces of many oncologists and cancer patients. They have good reason to grin, for three reasons: We could be on the way toward doing away with the cancer biopsy. Researchers reported that a “liquid biopsy” blood test that’s possible due to advanced genome sequencing can find tiny pieces of cancer DNA in...
The FH 2015 Social Health Survey: A Second Opinion From Dr. Digital
April 20, 2015
Melissa Solomon and Adam Silverstein contributed to this article. Survey finds over 50% of patients consult with Dr. Google or Facebook before or after a doctor’s visit Our Social Health survey of more than 500 people reveals some important patient behaviors. First, patients form an opinion about a treatment option before they step foot in...
The FleishmanHillard 2015 Social Health Survey
April 7, 2015
How people care for themselves and others using social and mobile media Which networks people use and how they use them differs greatly depending on age range as well as whether the person is looking for information about their own health or finding information as a caregiver to someone else. The charts below show the...
The Affordable Care Act Turns 5
March 27, 2015
This week marks the 5th anniversary of the passage of the Affordable Care Act. While the law appears to be making progress toward achieving its goals, it remains as divisive as ever and continues to face attempts to dismantle the law. Just last month, emboldened by the new Republican majority in the U.S. Senate, the...
The New, New Healthcare Law
March 27, 2015
Like the homeowner who winds up tripling his remodeling budget by telling the contractor “While you’re at it, can you ..." Congress is wrapping up what might be the most significant healthcare bill since the Affordable Care Act of 2010. What started out as a bill to fix a broken Medicare payment system for doctors...
Good News for Doctors and Children!
March 19, 2015
Congress is poised to do something remarkable. Republicans and Democrats in the House and Senate are ready to enact legislation putting an end to an 18-year odyssey that alienated millions of physicians and created a continual environment of uncertainty for both practitioners and a vulnerable patient population. At the same time, they plan to extend...
Does the Affordable Care Act Have Nine Lives?
March 5, 2015
Today’s oral arguments before the U.S. Supreme Court are just the latest challenge to the Affordable Care Act (ACA), the sweeping healthcare reform law enacted in 2010 also known as “Obamacare”. And it is not likely it will be the last. This isn’t the first time the pundits declared the ACA DOA: In 2009, the...
Changes Afoot for Vaccine Production in Russia
February 3, 2015
The Russian Ministry of Health plans to bring all Russian vaccine producers into a single national immune-biological cluster in 2015. In Russia, the market for the vaccines included in the National Immunization Schedule is quite a special segment of the pharmaceutical market. The main buyer of prophylactic vaccines is the State, which is also the...
It’s the Most Wonderful Time of Year
January 16, 2015
It’s the most wonderful time of year. For healthcare, that is. This week in San Francisco, over 300 healthcare companies, both public and private, presented vision, business objectives, challenges and opportunities for 2015 at arguably the year’s largest meeting, the 33rd Annual J.P. Morgan (client) Healthcare Conference. Investors, media, healthcare professionals, even patient advocates swarmed...
Taking the Pulse: Obamacare Round Two
November 11, 2014
Hard to believe it’s time for the second year of full implementation of the Affordable Care Act —aka Obamacare. On November 15, the health insurance marketplaces reopen for business for Americans to shop for private health insurance. Proponents are hoping this year will look nothing like last year’s debacle. The Obama Administration, worried about setting...
Taking the Pulse: What Will the New Congress Prescribe on Healthcare Policy?
November 6, 2014
Now that the 2014 elections are more or less over (ah, runoffs…) it’s time to consider their impact. Republicans made strong gains in both houses of Congress, cementing their already strong majority in the House and retaking control of the Senate in resounding fashion. Republicans also made gains at the state level and held off...
Putting Ebola Into Context
October 17, 2014
Striking a delicate balance between communicating a healthcare threat and managing public perceptions “Rumours and panic are spreading faster than the virus,” said Dr Margaret Chan, director general of the World Health Organisation on Monday this week. In the same speech she called the Ebola outbreak “a crisis for international peace and security”. While the...
Lots Left Unanswered After FDA Social Guidance
July 15, 2014
For almost five years, the pharmaceutical industry has essentially held its collective breath waiting for guidelines from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration on how it should operate on social media and the Internet. Out of a public hearing held in 2009 with pharmaceutical companies and medical device makers, five pressing questions were posed by...
No Roar From Pharma at Cannes Lions Health
June 15, 2014
And the Grand Prix winner is…Well, turns out we’re going to have to wait until next year at least in the pharmaceutical category. The pharma jury at the inaugural Cannes Lions Health festival shocked the audience at the Palais des Festivals by opting not to award one, throwing down a challenge to clients and agencies...
Saving Lives Is a Creative Endeavour
June 15, 2014
What if mobile phones could detect cancer cells? Or an ultrasound was performed via television? How would these disruptive technologies impact healthcare models and how would communications adapt to help save lives? These were amongst some of the most provocative questions asked on day one at Lions Health. During a session entitled Creative Ideas and Innovators...
It's Pharma's Turn for a Little Sunshine — Get Sunscreen
June 12, 2014
Last April, as the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid (CMS) released information about individual physician payments from Medicare, there was a firestorm of media about the big bucks some doctors and medical specialties were raking in from the federal program. National and locals outlets piled on, some even posting multiple articles, and naming names of...
Curiosity, Creativity and Healthcare
June 12, 2014
Some might think that those of us who work in healthcare lack the creative instinct, that our analytical minds and the rules restricting marketing and communications in the industry squeeze out any room for real originality and inspiration. I disagree completely. When I was a kid my favorite topic in school was biology. I was...