, Japan

Bristol-Myers Squibb Japan wins Digital Innovation of the Year

It was awarded for its PSP@SNS Platform at the Healthcare Asia Pharma Awards.

With an aging population, Bristol Myers Squibb identified a problem in Japan. The isolation of the elderly has become a serious problem, with many having a strong desire not to make their families worry even if they are sick. There are also those who do not feel free to confide or consult their anxieties or worries.

To motivate the elderly in seeking treatment and to see it in a positive light, the company has developed the Patient Support Program (PSP) using the LINE app. The company said that many of the elderly are familiar with this app.

The focus is on three of the main functions of PSP:  to stay active with gamification, mobile notification, and communication with family and caregivers using SNS. This is also alongside its other goal of creating a support system.

The LINE PSP for chronic myelogenous leukemia (CML) patients is focused on preventing missed doses. If patients with CML take the medicine properly, they can get a one-piece puzzle each time. The puzzle is completed when 30 pieces are complete. Through this, patients can enjoy the game whilst taking medicine. On top of this gamification is that it will help prevent patients from forgetting to take it.

The company has also added two new functions last 09 May in the Version 2 of the initiative.

There is also the Multiple Myeloma (MM) LINE PSP which is focused specifically on communication between patients and their families and caregivers. The company created a support system that facilitates group talks and communication.

According to the company, patients can use cute and familiar characters in the app to convey their mood for the day. When the patients feel good, they can send an illustration of a smiling dog to their family and caregivers every day through the LINE app.

For this innovative product, the company was given the Digital Innovation of the Year – Japan award in the recently concluded Healthcare Asia Pharma Awards, hosted by Healthcare Asia.

The awards programme honours hospitals, clinics and other healthcare providers that have risen above the challenges and made a remarkable impact to their patients most especially amidst the massive disruption caused by the COVID-19 pandemic.

In giving this award, the judging panel considered three major achievements of the company. First is that this is considered the first LINE official account for cancer patients. Second is that it was able to develop a digital medication management notebook. Lastly, it enabled visiting hospitals and medication management to be completed with just one smartphone.

Bristol Myers Squibb said that it developed the Line PSPs with the desire to help the elderly and to lessen their worries and anxieties. It hopes to build a support system by offering a platform where easy communication and group talk can be done with families and caregivers at any time of the day. It added that its main challenge is to turn the situation into a positive one for many of the patients.

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