Crisis Management

#EpiGate: How Mylan is handling criticism over increased EpiPen pricing

crisisaheadOver the last several months the heat around #EpiGate has been building. Mylan, the pharmaceutical company that owns the EpiPen emergency allergy treatment, has had to defend its price increases on the life-saving drug, which means the company’s crisis communication team has been spending a lot of time in the war room.

Since 2004, the price of a pack of two EpiPens has risen from $100 to more than $600 today — a price that poses a significant barrier for patients whose insurance won’t cover the treatment. This issue is compounded by the fact that there are very few alternate solutions for patients. Mylan controls nearly 90 percent of the market for epinephrine injectors. Some patients have resorted to asking physicians to fill syringes with epinephrine and teach them how to administer them without the EpiPen technology. This alternative only costs around $20, adding further fuel to the fire around why EpiPens are so expensive.

At the same time that the cost of the EpiPen rose, so did Mylan CEO Heather Bresch’s salary — from $2.4 million in 2007 when Mylan acquired the EpiPen to nearly $19 million in 2015 — further adding to the…

Branding

How to Succeed in the (Competitive) Business of Smiling

They’re like the great “Oz” of the dental industry: the tireless dental laboratory, working behind the curtain, crafting the beautiful smiles of everyone from celebrities and pro athletes to (relatively) average Joes like you and me.  A good smile conveys good health, confidence, competence, and attractiveness. Who doesn’t want that? So you’d think there’d be more than enough work to keep dental labs in business. But check any issue of Dental Economics (a good read, by the way) it’s a very competitive and complex industry. Quality is what can set you apart, but quantity is what makes you money. Hand crafting each tooth is a differentiator, but you also need the latest technology for things like case planning, diagnostics, and milling. Dentists can be very loyal when they find a great lab, but then they won’t refer you because they don’t want their competitors in on their secret. Add this to a more discerning and cost-conscious customers (dentists and their patients) and the “business of smiling” is a “grit-your-teeth” kind of industry. That’s why Valley Dental Arts (VDA), one of the premier cosmetic and restorative dental laboratories in the country, decided it needed an agency partner to help identify and grow its competitive edge. In 2014, they selected PadillaCRT to help map their path

Healthcare

Saving Lives Through Storytelling

Did you know that every three minutes someone is diagnosed with blood cancer? Yet, many people don’t know that they can be the cure for patients with blood cancers like leukemia, lymphoma and other life-threatening diseases. The best part? To register as a potential marrow donor, it’s as simple as a cheek swab.

Today marks the first day of National Blood Cancer Awareness Month, giving us yet another reason to raise awareness for critically ill patients in need of a life-saving marrow or umbilical cord blood transplant.

btmwr15Be The Match® is the world’s leading nonprofit organization focused on saving lives through marrow and cord blood transplantation. The organization works to register committed potential marrow donors to the Be The Match Registry® every day, because 70 percent of patients do not have a fully matched donor in their family.

At PadillaCRT, we are passionate about our work with Be The Match. We help them raise awareness of the need for more potential donors to join the registry. Throughout this work, our message can vary to highlight the need for people of color, committed donors and even young, male donors. However, there is one thing

Branding

Gen Z: Five Key Insights for Healthcare Brands

Source: Phenomena

Raise your hand if you’re tired of hearing about the Millennials.

Employers have been trying to figure out how to deal with Millennials since they entered the work force about 15 years ago and healthcare has been bracing for the changes that they might bring as consumers.  Now, it’s time to start preparing for the next generation, who will comprise 40% of all consumers by 2020: Generation Z.

Members of Gen Z were born between 1995 and 2015 and have been parented by Gen X’ers and the older Millennials. They are digital natives, born after the internet was popularized and raised on smart phones.  With the youngest members of Gen Z celebrating their first birthday this year, it will be quite some time until we feel the full impact of this generation.  However, extensive research has already been done to reveal the attitudes and behaviors of the older half of Gen Z (who go up to 21 years old), many of whom are in or approaching college or about to enter the workforce.

While Gen Z won’t dominate healthcare use in the near future, smart brands are taking notice and thinking about engagement strategies now, especially as

B2B/Technology

Full Speed Ahead: Medical Device Trends through 2017

Medical devices: where the speed of innovation meets the molasses of FDA approval!  Despite that fact, the medical device health care sector consistently brings science and invention to life.  2016 has been a year of mergers & acquisitions, new products and pioneering technologies. This piece looks at the rest of 2016.  Specifically, what trends are still gaining steam and what developments will become mainstays in 2017 – we found five – four-and-a-half actually, because the last one is a gimme.

Health caBlue Belt Technologies Navio Surgical Systemre’s new manifest destiny: robotic surgery.

It’s nearly a two decade old innovation but a bit of “land grab” right now because EVERYONE’S getting in on it.  Starting in 2000 with da Vinci Surgery, to the 2015 joint venture between Johnson & Johnson and Google’s Verily Verb Surgical, and Smith and Nephew’s acquisition of Blue Belt Technologies and its Navio Surgical System– medical device manufacturers are looking for the edge that allows them to increase operating room efficiency and revolutionize the surgical experience for their customers.  Looking ahead, device manufacturers that combine machine learning, advanced imagery, and use an open-source technology will own

Branding

Olympians – They’re Just Like Us

If you’ve been watching this year’s Olympics (or just reading the news), you’ve likely seen a few athletes with dark red/purple spots on their bodies. Earlier this week, superstar-Olympian Michael Phelps entered the pool with those large, dark circles on his shoulders and back; and so, the questions began. It’s called cupping. But what is it, and how much do we really know about what seems to be the latest trend?

Cupping is an ancient therapy that dates back nearly 2,000 years and has mostly been used in Middle Eastern and Asian countries. Many people have never heard of it before, and now it’s got us all in a frenzy trying to figure it out. Athletes use it as a healing therapy that consists of having round glass suction cups placed on the sore parts of their body. The cup creates a partial vacuum, which is believed to stimulate muscles and blood flow, while relieving pain.

Most of the world saw Phelps’ cupping marks for the first time this week, but turns out he’s actually been practicing the treatment for at least a year. So does it hurt? Here’s a quick look at Phelps’

Branding

How to Lose Sales…on Purpose: A Lesson From the Canadian Tobacco Industry

Credit: Smoke-free Canada

On a recent trip to Canada, I had the privilege of exploring Niagara Falls, Toronto, Ottawa and Montreal. It’s always exciting to explore a new place and, that being said, I expected some cultural differences. Prior to my trip, I knew Canada had a different healthcare system than that of the U.S., but I quickly learned that the health differences didn’t end there.

While in Toronto, my brother pointed out an empty cigarette carton on the ground – completely taboo from anything I’d ever seen before. On it was a photo of an older woman hooked up to an oxygen tank, with a short story about how smoking gave her emphysema and led to her lungs collapsing four times. The picture took up so much of the box that the brand of cigarettes was the very last thing I noticed. If you work in communications or public relations, this would typically be a nightmare, but I couldn’t help but admire the angle Canada is taking to send a message and how it may be benefiting their overall health goals.

Upon further digging, I found that…

Healthcare

Use the Right Digital & Social in Health Care Marketing

RED

For years, marketers have been searching for the precise digital and social media messages to reach the Gen-Xers, millennials and Generation Z.

We’ve been breaking our backs trying to find the perfect way to reach and target these groups in all industries, from food and beverage to technology, and health care marketing is no exception. However, the same digital and social media strategies do not necessarily follow the newest, “hottest” platforms trending on a broader level.

Some health care audiences—those who can be motivated to seek out providers and pharmaceutical products—are not likely posting on Snapchat or Instagram. They’re swapping health care stories on some of the more traditional channels like Facebook or Twitter.

Millennials—one of the largest digital target groups on the planet—may have surpassed baby boomers in population numbers, yet Americans born between 1946 and 1964 are also online and are projected to have an enormous impact on the purchase of heath care services for many marketing years to come.

Health care marketers will need to develop digital and social strategies that will target the 74.9 million baby boomers. By 2020, this group will account for a 74 percent increase in the population aged 65 and up, according to

Healthcare

Use the Right Digital & Social in Health Care Marketing

For years, marketers have been searching for the precise digital and social media messages to reach the Gen-Xers, millennials and Generation Z.

We’ve been breaking our backs trying to find the perfect way to reach and target these groups in all industries, from food and beverage to technology, and health care marketing is no exception. However, the same digital and social media strategies do not necessarily follow the newest, “hottest” platforms trending on a broader level.

Some health care audiences—those who can be motivated to seek out providers and pharmaceutical products—are not likely posting on Snapchat or Instagram. They’re swapping health care stories on some of the more traditional channels like Facebook or Twitter.

Millennials—one of the largest digital target groups on the planet—may have surpassed baby boomers in population numbers, yet Americans born between 1946 and 1964 are also online and are projected to have an enormous impact on the purchase of heath care services for many marketing years to come.

Health care marketers will need to develop digital and social strategies that will target the 74.9 million baby boomers. By 2020, this group will account for a 74 percent increase in the population aged 65 and up, according to

Healthcare

Building a Better Newsroom INSIDE Your Company

When I was a reporter, I was skeptical of any “news” issued by businesses or other organizations. At the time (I’m dating myself here), that “news” was in the form of press releases and the occasional (rehearsed) media interview or press conference.  Even when we did report on company-generated news, we researched the heck out of it to make sure it was objective – and to make sure we identified bias and included other points of view.

Fast forward to today. As a PR professional, I’ve used my skepticism to help organizations develop and deliver newsworthy content.  But it wasn’t until recently that I gained a new found respect for how seriously a growing number of organizations are taking the responsibility of being a respected news source. It happened when a health care client of ours asked us to help them build a world-class news operation.

Courtesy: enterpriseflorida.com

Now this client already had a well-run media relations and consumer news operation, but realized that in today’s competitive and cluttered news environment, it needed to become even more proactive and efficient in leading the discussions around health topics of interest – not just those that involved their own achievements. The challenge was finding an efficient way to involve multiple internal…