Top Five Questions Asked at Making ePI a Reality: The User Journey Webinar (Session 2)

Below you can find the answers to the top five questions asked by webinar attendees during the second session of our webinar around the electronic Product Information (ePI) Use Case.

On the 11th of January, we hosted our second and final session of PharmaLedger’s third open webinar, “Making ePI a Reality: The User Journey.” This webinar highlighted the electronic Product Information (ePI) use case and examined its history, evolution and future state. In addition to a live demo, patients joined the event as guest speakers to share their experience regarding their participation in workshops around the discovery, ideation, prototype features, and prototype validation of ePI to better improve the application.

Attendees had the opportunity to submit their questions throughout the webinar and were encouraged to answer poll questions asked by speakers. Any questions that were submitted could also be voted on by the attendees, and those with the highest votes were then answered by the presenters. Below you will find the top five voted questions asked during the second webinar session of “Making ePI a Reality: The User Journey.” 

Top Five Questions Asked Part II – Making ePI a Reality: The User Journey

The ePI use case co-leads Patrick Maher (Novartis) and Ken Thursby (MSD) answered these top five questions that received the most votes. You can read a summary of the speakers’ responses below.

Question 1. What’s to stop either HAs (health authorities) and/or Pharma companies from creating their own ePI ecosystem(s) and not utilizing a PharmaLedger Blockchain solution?

Ken: Nothing is stopping them. In Japan, HA’s have implemented a national ePI solution.  Some Pharma companies have created their own app for their own ePI product. This has pros and cons. When centralising eLeaflets, there is a burden on health authorities because they’d have to manage every pharma companies’ eLeaflet, which would be a tedious and costly process. The leaflets being printed today are decentralised in the sense that every manufacturer looks after their own leaflet. PharmaLedger’s digitised eLeaflets spread the costs and are more manageable. In terms of companies doing this on their own, patient groups gave feedback that they don’t want to download multiple apps per manufacturer. It is much more convenient when there is one app that allows a patient to look up information about many manufacturers. 

One of the biggest advantages of the PharmaLedger solution is the trusted platform through which there can be trusted sharing of data and information. This can help improve overall trust in the healthcare system and improve patient safety. It can also provide other valuable services for better health condition management and outcomes for patients. Just solving for ePI is also called a digital dead-end solution. Another option is to have a digital solution that is open-ended. This allows the exchange of data and information to create value.

Question 2. Is the expectation that instructions on how to download the app, scan the barcode and access the ePI would be: a) universal b) included on pack c) shared by HCPs (healthcare professionals)?

Patrick: It’s the practicality of this whole situation. How would a person know where to get the app, for example? There would have to be changes in PharmaLedger’s course, such as other means to engage with HCPs, pharmacies, etc, to make sure patients know where to download the mobile app.

Ken: It’s also worth adding that in Singapore, the proof of concept mocked-up images on the medicine packages with different ways of informing users to get the mobile app and scan the code. It was well-received, but as PharmaLedger goes to different markets with different national preferences, there needs to be some thought on how to inform others about downloading the app, especially if there isn’t digital access.

Question 3. How do you anticipate this solution being adopted by older generations that aren’t as tech-savvy? 

Patrick: This is a common topic when going digital. There has to be multiple distribution channels for people. For those that don’t have digital devices and for those that don’t use them. The ability to print will still be needed regardless of the PharmaLedger solution or any other solution. There has to be a solution for those that don’t live in the digital world.

Question 4. Do you think COVID has positively or negatively impacted the paradigm shift needed to bring this to market?

Patrick: I think it has positively impacted the shift since now we are used to scanning everything, such as menus at a restaurant. It has potentially positively impacted the ability to scan things such as medicine packs in the ePI use case.

Question 5. Do you plan on testing the app with more patients and HCPs after incorporating their feedback? (Or, will there be another round?)

Ken: Absolutely. PharmaLedger works with agile methodology, which means that a version of a product is made. These have been prototypes up to now and PharmaLedger is planning to do a product launch later this year. That production launch won’t be the end product because further feedback from patients and HCPs is still needed to keep it relevant and valuable to them.

You can watch the full recording and individual presentations of “Making ePI a Reality: The User Journey” on our YouTube channel. Be sure to subscribe to be notified of new video releases.

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