Ryan Jones, CEO of Florence Healthcare, on the VatorNews podcast

Florence Healthcare provides electronic document workflow management tools for clinical trials

Steven Loeb and Bambi Francisco Roizen speak with RYan Jones, CEO of Florence Healthcare, a remote connectivity and electronic document workflow management company for clinical trials.

Our overall goal is to understand how technology is radically changing healthcare: the way we screen, treat, and measure progress and outcomes. How we empower the consumer. Are we creating productivity that lowers economic costs? And how technological advances are changing the role of the physician.

Interview Highlights:

  • The pharmaceutical industry spends $120 billion every year to conduct clinical drug trials. They hire people to go and meet with doctors and set up trials where the doctor distributes the experimental drug, and then they pay that doctor to staff the site with nurses and other doctors and to enroll patients. However, the doctors, their teams and the nurses who do the work and see the patients make do with spreadsheets and three ring binders. The idea behind Florence was to create an application as easy to use as Facebook or Instagram to manage all the document and data collection of these teams of doctors.
  • Running a clinical trial is a bit like shooting a movie or a TV show: the pharmaceutical company has to give them the technology, they give them resources and give them the pills or the devices they are testing to help them conduct the test. . At the end of the trial, they get it all back, just taking down a sound stage; nothing is left for the trial sites to keep for those doctors to keep and use again. Of the $125 billion spent each year, about $20 billion is spent on this soundstage equipment that needs to be revamped.
  • One set of trials was previously at an academic medical center like Stanford or UNC Chapel Hill or Harvard, but that limited the number of patients these studies could access. If you have good software, you can change the definition of what a trial site is: it could be a CVS MinuteClinic or a Walmart clinic or a community clinic or a library , making trials more inclusive.
  • By removing all the hassles of documentation and data collection, as well as the lag and communication between the pharmaceutical sponsor and the trial sites, Florence can reduce the duration of a study by several weeks, which can represent 5% to 10% of the cost, potentially saving tens of millions of dollars.
  • As studies get more complex, pharmaceutical companies can’t rely on waiting to see how they’re doing, and they can’t rely on the expertise of those running the trial. They need technology that can put expertise anywhere by enabling remote exchange of ideas or remote data exchange. The real benefit is a continuous connection, an always-on digital connection, to where the drug is being tested in the marketplace.

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