Close-up of peoples' hands, holding pens, pointing to data; MA decision-making concept

Improve MA Decision-Making With Advanced Business Intelligence Tools

Medical Affairs (MA) teams play a rapidly evolving and increasingly integrated role in life sciences business efforts. As the center of information collection, analysis, and management, MA teams have much to offer business decision-makers in life sciences — and a role to play in making some of those decisions directly.

Advanced business intelligence tools can help Medical Affairs teams make sense of information, generate deeper insights through progressive analytics, and contribute effectively to conversations on business intelligence and business decision-making.

The Role of Medical Affairs in Life Sciences Business Efforts

In 2018, McKinsey researchers predicted that by 2025, Medical Affairs teams would take a leading role alongside R&D and commercial units in the work of life sciences organizations.

By October 2023, McKinsey acknowledged that its timeline was too long. Medical Affairs teams wouldn’t take their place by 2025; in fact, they already had. “That future is now; there’s work to be done to realize it and reach the next level vision,” write Jeffrey Algazy and fellow McKinsey authors.

Algazy et al. identify four key deliverables for Medical Affairs teams before the 2020s end:

  • Innovative evidence generation. Medical Affairs teams will continue to play an essential role in generating evidence in health economics and outcomes research, real-world evidence, and phase IIIb and phase IV studies. Medical Affairs teams will also be essential to managing, protecting, and sharing that information.
  • Improved access to research, information, and healthcare. Medical Affairs teams will continue to lead the charge in communicating high-quality evidence, publications, research findings, and other information. They’ll be called upon to reach multiple audiences, tailoring their work to the needs of each.
  • Life sciences leadership. By expanding their capabilities and improving their performance, Medical Affairs teams will provide strategic direction within life sciences organizations — becoming the “third pillar” of these companies (alongside R&D and commercial) to drive maximum impact at all levels.
  • Data-backed decision-making. Medical Affairs focuses heavily on managing, understanding, and communicating essential medical and business information. From this position, MA teams will increasingly be asked to participate in conversations among physicians, patients, and business leaders to improve medical and business decision-making at each stage.

To fulfill these lofty goals, life sciences organizations will need to invest in Medical Affairs leadership. They’ll also need to invest in the end-to-end data and analytics required to allow Medical Affairs teams to generate thorough, complete, and clear business insights.

Colleagues look at laptop screen; MA decision-making concept 

Digital Solutions for Better Business Intelligence

“The Medical Affairs (MA) function in pharmaceutical companies creates a unique opportunity to ensure the internal linkage between Research & Development (R&D) and Commercial/Marketing functions, in addition to managing external scientific engagements with multiple stakeholders across life-science ecosystems,” write Anupma Dhanda Farrington, Anne Grete Frøstrup, and Palle Dahl in a 2023 article in Pharmaceutical Medicine.

To build this link between R&D and Commercial functions, however, Medical Affairs teams need the right digital solutions. These solutions allow MA teams to more effectively pursue the efforts that will allow them to fully integrate R&D and Commercial efforts to reach an organization’s goals.

Anju’s TA Scan seeks to boost business intelligence for better Medical Affairs decision-making. TA Scan is designed to support the clinical study project workflow from start to finish. Using modules that support sequenced business decisions, life sciences organizations can focus on:

  • Expert Identification and Profiling.
  • Trial Planning and Site Selection.
  • Competitive Intelligence and Disease Landscaping.

TA Scan mines data from hundreds of public domain sources. Its data pool includes over 450,000 unique clinical trials occurring in hundreds of countries worldwide. Continuous data updates ensure that information is never stale or obsolete.

By using patented linking and analysis algorithms, TA Scan can glean insights from its data sources, offering experience-based insights to drive better business intelligence and decision-making. Medical Affairs teams can use TA Scan as part of their total strategy to understand and respond proactively in today’s competitive trial landscape.

Medical Affairs plays an increasingly vital and integrated role in the world of life sciences research. Solutions like TA Scan allow MA teams to engage with business intelligence more effectively, leading to better decision-making.

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Authored by Elke Ydens, Associate Director of Business Solutions, Data Division

Elke Ydens, Associate Director of Business Solutions at Anju’s Data Division, brings over a decade of life sciences experience and a PhD in Biochemistry and Biotechnology from the University of Antwerp. As a Subject Matter Expert in Data Science, she adeptly addresses customer needs, leveraging her background in neuro-immunology and biochemistry. Elke remains dedicated to professional growth, contributing to industry publications, and staying updated on industry trends, while also finding success in extracurricular pursuits, formerly competing in world and European bridge championships, and more recently active in beekeeping and coaching. Connect with Elke on LinkedIn to explore her achievements further.

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