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Cell and Gene Therapy: Keeping the patient at heart

Cell and Gene Therapy (C&GT) puts the patient at the center of the ecosystem more than any other technology. Therefore, it is important for leaders in the field to emphasize to all stakeholders that prioritizing the patient’s needs is a fundamental part of their mission. 

With over 3,000 C&GTs in development worldwide, the significant therapeutic potential of these treatments is evident across the industry. However, there is still a gap between the potential of these advances and the patient’s understanding and experience of them that pharma must find ways to bridge. 


The importance of the patient experience

C&GTs are medical treatments that use cells and genes to treat a variety of conditions such as burns, degenerative disorders, and cancers. 

These ‘autologous’ therapies are unique from traditional treatments as they must be personalized to each patient. Patients themselves play a central role in the development of their treatment, as they require the use of their own cells as raw materials. As technology improves and more companies enter the market, treatments for rare diseases will become more available. 

To ensure the success of these therapies, all parties involved must prioritize the patient experience and provide the right support through the treatment journey. 


Tailoring content to meet patient communication needs

To effectively communicate with C&GT patients, there are four core pillars that the industry must adopt into its strategies:

  1. Pricing, reimbursement, and support systems that prioritize the patient experience.
  2. Delivery and experience analysis that focuses on creating personalized and empathetic interactions.
  3. Interactive patient journey maps that track and analyze the patient experience from early onboarding through cell collection, treatment, and beyond.
  4. Patient and clinical education about the treatment and support options, as well as opportunities for patients to customize their healthcare.

Effectively addressing patient and public misconceptions

As with many new treatments, there is often a level of mistrust and uncertainty in patient and public perceptions that must be addressed when it comes to C&GTs. 

Setting realistic expectations built on transparent dialogue, as well as clearly communicating the clinical benefits and risks at every stage, is key to a successful patient journey. 

Effective communication and data use are important to ensuring the success of C&GTs. This includes providing accessible information, on-demand healthcare support, and virtual appointments for patients.

Although technology has improved the patient experience, more personalized engagement is still needed and will require more effective dialogue between patients and their healthcare providers (HCPs). 

In our piece with Ben Beckley, our Global Lead at EmerGENE discusses how to create a detailed map of the entire patient journey and how C&GT manufacturers can develop more tailored communications strategies to ensure success. 


Read more: https://pf-media.co.uk/pf-magazine/pf-magazine-spring-22-the-future-of-pharma/ (page 18-19)