And this is what our Luminaries series is all about: empowerment. Here are the stories of our Kin + Carta Luminaries.
Our next Luminary, Lucy Heapy, is the Associate Director Marketing at Gilead Sciences Headquartered in California for the US and in Uxbridge for the EU, Gilead is a biotechnology company that researches, develops and commercializes drugs. Gilead’s scientific focus has resulted in 23 marketed products that are benefiting millions of people
During our conversation, Lucy emphasised the importance of leadership driving digital transformation to push the boundaries of possibility in pharma. Here’s what she had to say…
Dr Pamela Walker: To get started, could you tell us about your role currently and what your objectives and goals are?
Lucy Heapy: My objectives and goals [in my role at Gilead] really surmount to the same thing: improving the lives of those living with liver disease. Specifically in viral hepatitis, Gilead is committed to supporting the efforts of governments, payers and healthcare organisations who actively support the World Health Organization (WHO) elimination goals for 2030. I feel very proud to be part of a team who are so passionate about contributing to the elimination of a global public health threat.
PM: What will it look and feel like to be your customer in five years? What will be the same? What will be different?
LH: I think this depends on how you classify ‘customer’, however one thing is for certain and that’s the ‘Empowered and Informed Patient’ is on the rise. This isn’t really surprising when we consider how the internet, digital media and technologies have transformed marketing and the promotional environment since the very first website went live in 1991. Less than 30 years later there is an abundance of health information online. Patients can access stories and experiences from others living with similar conditions and diseases which are shared via the web in chat forums and on social media. Patients are seeking and quite rightly even demanding to be treated as partners when it comes to making decisions about their healthcare. Patients and healthcare professionals are consumers, they like to increasingly access information and services on-demand, via multiple channels, in any place, at any time. There is no reason this couldn’t apply to medicines. Look at the recent Amazon acquisition of Pillpack, you don’t have to think too hard about how that could entirely change the face of pharmacy distribution. In 2019 and no doubt in 5 years from now in all industries — Convenience is king.
PM: What will it look and feel like to be our customers in 5 years time?
LH: I honestly don’t know but to share with you one of my favourite quotes at the moment which is from ‘Hans Vestberg, President & CEO of Ericcson, ‘The pace of change will never be as slow again’
PM: What do you think is at the heart of digital transformation?
LH: I had an epiphany moment when someone told me not that long ago, that at the heart of digital transformation is simply, ‘strategy’ in a digital world. Now we all know that in order to be successful your strategy should be insight-based, differentiating and allow you to satisfy your customer requirements, however, the point that this person was trying to make to me was that the ‘transformation’ part has already happened. We’ve been ‘digitally disrupted’ already. It’s happened and is still happening all around us. Once I had got my head wrapped around that part, I realised the possibilities and opportunities are endless!
PM: What role does leadership have in driving digital transformation within a firm?
LH: In England, the Department of Health (DOH) Long Term Plan clearly defines the drive to support e-health initiatives in every element of healthcare, from patient concordance and management to helping to support outcomes. Leaders should be encouraging internal process change to push boundaries and challenge the traditional ‘safe’ pharma offering.