Welcome to the team, Kristine!

Nuvera is thrilled to announce the addition of Kristine Lemke to our leadership team. Kristine’s 25+ years of experience in the healthcare industry promises to enrich the strength of Nuvera even further.

A highly sought-after professional, Kristine brings a portfolio that includes working in and through the matrix of the pharmaceutical industry. The highlights are inclusive of the elements that constitute success across product commercialization. Kristine has served as leader of brand launches, has broad channel & distribution expertise, and she is passionate about delivering first-class patient services.

Kristine’s versatility has been informed by the breath of industry roles. Prior to joining Nuvera, Kristine was Senior Principal at Blue Fin Group, Vice President at Xcenda, an AmerisourceBergen company, and enjoyed a successful, fifteen-year tenure with Eli Lilly and Company.

Kristine earned her bachelor’s degree from the University of Rochester, an MBA from the William E. Simon Graduate School of Business Administration, and is a Six Sigma black belt. Outside of work, Kristine enjoys exploring places near and far enjoying art, food and music and the people of her travels. At home she enjoys cooking, fitness and being outdoors and is committed to mindful service through national and local board service.

Motivation for Joining Nuvera

“I have always been impressed with the depth and breadth of Nuvera’s team and their commercialization work – identifying key issues / opportunities to provide the optimal patient and provider experience. I am excited to join the team and leverage our combined experiences in new, innovative service offerings.”

Evolving Patient Support Programs to Enhance the Patient Experience: Conference Recap

Nuvera would like to congratulate our team on their engaging and informative presentations at the Patient Support Services Congress last week. It is always exciting to see a fully captive audience when presenting.

Ed facilitating the panel discussion

Ed Gajewski facilitated a panel discussion with key thought leaders from the manufacturing side to share their insights on how they continue to evolve their approach to support services to enhance the patient experience.  The three panelist, Natasha Ammenheuser from Boehringer Ingelheim, Chad Bower from DSI, and Jeff Park from Cytokinetics, have worked across all aspects of the product life cycle and shared their thoughts on how patient support should go beyond the typical patient support program. Key themes that they all highlighted were the need to invest in an early treatment blueprint or customer experience. This is critical for two reasons; one, it allows the organization to truly look under the hood to understand how things are working and two, it brings the organization together and aligns on a north star. The second common theme was cross functional collaboration and giving those partners a seat at the table. Not only does this foster a greater understating of the product for everyone, but it also ensures alignment and adoption at an early stage.

Derek Cothran and Jens Kulstad took the stage next to highlight trends uncovered in the PURE Report and share the winners of the 2023 Best-in-class Annual PURE Awards in oncology, neurology, and immunology. The PURE Report in an independent industry benchmark of patient and HCP satisfaction, utilization, and evolving needs across patient support programs and the overall treatment experience. They announced the Annual Best-in-class Pharma Support Program award winners and the newly released Spotlight winners. The 2023 winners for Best-in-class Pharma Support Program are Bristol Myers Squibb in Oncology, Genentech in Neurology, and Abbvie in Immunology. The Spotlight award was created to highlight the small to mid-size biotech companies. The 2023 Spotlight winners are Daichi-Sankyo in oncology, Neurocrine in neurology, and Incyte in immunology.

Finally, Farris Ibrahim co-presented with Kim Spalter and Lori DeLorenzo from Bayer to share the importance of strategically planning patient support ramp up and deactivation. Their discussion emphasized three main considerations. First, when building a patient support program an organization should map the holistic experience and set support experience goals. Second, understand the need to modify your program as it evolves but reducing the impact of service deactivation is key.  There will be discomfort with change, but it is important to be patient. Finally, establishing behaviors and communication are essential to reduce the impact of change for both internal cross-functional teams and external stakeholders.

It was a great conference and opportunity to catch up with so many colleagues across the industry.

Welcome to the team, Jeff!

Nuvera is excited to welcome Jeff Chen to the team!

Jeff comes to Nuvera with several years of experience in the life sciences industry within regulatory compliance, regulatory M&A, quality assurance, operations quality, and R&D. His experience spans a diverse range of companies from dynamic startups to global industry leaders, across various stages of the product lifecycle. Most recently, Jeff worked at KPMG, where he supported global life sciences companies in addressing their most pressing quality, regulatory, and process optimization efforts across the value chain. Jeff holds an MS in Biotechnology from Johns Hopkins University and BS in Biological Sciences from University of Maryland.

Outside of his professional life, Jeff enjoys traveling, cooking, exercising, and rooting for Philly sports teams.

Motivation for Joining Nuvera

“I was eager to continue my journey in life sciences consulting, and after engaging with members of the Nuvera team, it became evident that they invest significantly in the success of their employees and clients. Nuvera strategically implements impactful and practical solutions with a patient-centric focus. Their unwavering commitment to elevating healthcare standards and positively impacting the lives of patients spoke volumes about their dedication to excellence.”

Nuvera’s PURE Report announces 2023 “best-in-class” pharmaceutical patient support and access programs in oncology and neurology

Bristol Myers Squibb and Genentech won their respective therapeutic areas for this year’s annual award.

Nuvera Life Science Consulting is pleased to announce its third annual awards for the pharmaceutical companies designated as “best-in-class” in patient support and access by physicians and support staff surveyed for the company’s 2023 PURE Reports: Bristol Myers Squibb in oncology and Genentech in neurology.

Pharmaceutical companies achieve best-in-class status in patient support and access based on the results gained from a research methodology using unaided and aided responses across seven indices in each of the therapeutic categories. This year a total of 625 physicians and 1,326 support staff participated in the national survey including the therapeutic categories of oncology and neurology.

In the field of oncology, Bristol Myers Squibb was recognized as the overall best company for its portfolio of drugs in both its hematology and solid tumor offerings. Technology is one of the areas both franchises excelled and received top scores due to their ability to leverage technology to enhance the customer experience. Technology features can also create a perception of ease of use which is an attribute that drives program utilization.

Genentech achieved best-in-class status in neurology for 2023. Genentech received top scores in every rated category from both the neurologists and their support staff. They were perceived as offering a broader set of services, where they go above and beyond the industry standard to provide superior services, ensuring that patients can make it to the treatment location and afford the therapy.

Jens Kulstad, Head of PURE Report noted: “We started this ‘Best-in-Class’ award as a way to highlight those companies viewed as the gold standard in patient support and access by the physicians and the support staff, so that other companies can see how to improve their services, eventually lifting up those in the entire therapeutic category to deliver better support.”

Nuvera publishes its PURE (Patient services Utilization, Recognition and Experience) Reports annually to serve as independent, industry benchmarks of patient and HCP satisfaction, utilization, and evolving needs across patient support programs to enable pharma and biotech companies to deliver an enhanced patient and HCP experience. The PURE reports are the only independent studies co-created with HCPs to measure HCP satisfaction. Over 6,200 providers and 1,700 patients have been surveyed since the therapeutic area and patient-focused PURE Reports were first published in 2019 resulting in scoring and ranking of approximately 25 pharmaceutical companies per therapeutic area.

To learn more about the PURE Report, visit https://thepurereport.com/ or Jens Kulstad at jens.kulstad@nuveracg.com.

Welcome to the Team, David!

Nuvera is excited to welcome David Schmidt to the team!

David comes to Nuvera with 25+ years of experience within the life sciences vertical. He brings REMS experience based on roles at Celgene Corporation, and RxCrossroads. He has held increasing leadership roles within pharma spanning: sales leadership, patient services, market access, channel strategy, account management, marketing, and training. Additional experience includes roles within specialty pharmacy, Hub patient support services and founded a digital patient engagement solution. 

David enjoys spending time in the mountains during the summer and fall but loves the winter and being in the snow both downhill as well as Nordic in the back country. Whenever the opportunity presents, he is ‘game’ to jump into the water with his dive gear. If neither of those are an option, you will find him at the local Bikram studio practicing.

His proudest achievement is his family as he will be celebrating 30 years of marriage and has two daughters (Lauren & Claire).

Motivation for Joining Nuvera

The team… he is humbled to be part of such a diverse and talented group and excited to share experiences to help manufacturers support patients and their families through very challenging times.

Nuvera’s Impact and The Projects That Left a Lasting Impression

Over the past 13 years, the team at Nuvera has had the privilege to support pharmaceutical and biotech companies and more importantly, patients, with the treatment experience for life altering specialty medications from commercialized to the new and novel treatments. In that time, specific medications or projects have stood out and highlighted the impact our team members have achieved in the life sciences space.

We have worked across nearly every therapeutic area and in markets across the world with the goal to help patients understand, start, stay, and adhere to their treatment plan. Here is a small sample of partnerships that have had a lasting impact on the team:

Oncology – Driving awareness around maintenance in aggressive blood cancer

“I worked with a drug manufacturer’s global branding team on finding pain points and moments that matter in the patient treatment journey across their core markets for an oral maintenance drug for Acute myeloid leukemia (AML), which is a very aggressive type of cancer of the blood and bone marrow with excess immature white blood cells that is usually found in an older patient population. This was my favorite project to date, because of the lack of awareness around maintenance therapy for AML patients’ post-remission and the global scale of this project.”   – Hanna J.

Rare Disease – Finding the commonality in a global patient experience

“The most impactful project I have worked on is probably for a Beta-Thalassemia, an inherited blood disorder, treatment blueprint that we included 44 stakeholders from 11 markets to align on the common path and highlight key country deviations” – Alicia S.

“There are a lot of excellent drugs out there that have moved the needle on quality of life and life expectancy. A rare few have had such a profound and drastic impact on a patient’s condition that they and their family can dream again of a future together. I worked on one such drug in the rare disease space. Whereas many children born with severe versions of the disease would end up chairbound for life or worse, deceased, this client’s drug allowed children not just to survive past infancy but to also to live normal, healthy, and full lives. Our project helped the manufacturer explore how they could help patients and their families meet treatment monitoring requirements at the height of the COVID-19 pandemic. Through the whole project, I was driven by my imagination of what it would be like if my own future son or daughter had the disease, and how I could best help our client do right by them. This was by far the most meaningful project I’ve had the privilege of working on at Nuvera”   – John V.

“My favorite project is the treatment experience blueprint we created for the specialty medication to treat Desmoid Tumors, a rare disease. It’s my favorite for three reasons: 1) The emerging BioPharma company we partnered with is launching its first medication and enterprise brand to the market. A successful launch is imperative and the blueprint helped them identify potential gaps and enhanced cross-functional collaboration; 2) The challenges facing patients, care partners, and providers that we identified in the blueprint were validated by primary patient market research and also patient/provider advisory boards; 3) The insights gathered influenced the design of the patient support programs, which will help thousands of patients who have experienced long and isolating journeys to diagnosis and treatment. “  – Bonnie H.

Health Equity – Creating frameworks to care for and see the unseen

“I had the opportunity to work with a large pharmaceutical company looking to capture and crystalize measurable goals around their foundational stance on health equity. Often times when we examine the continuum of care for patients, we examine their clinical needs and not factor the societal and structural barriers that affect their access and adherence to therapy. Working on this project has allowed me to gain key insights on the myriad of factors that affect patients’ access to care and the challenges associated with moving the needle towards greater equity within the healthcare space. Gaining the opportunity to develop frameworks and approaches that seek to integrate data and cross-functional collaboration can not only meet significant unmet needs but also boost the level of trust within marginalized communities- leading to better outcomes.”  – Nic C.

Patient Care – Expressing their voice in the treatment experience

“My favorite projects are the ones where I get to interact directly with patients or caregivers and pressure test our treatment experience blueprint outputs through co-creation. Throughout my time at Nuvera have had the benefit of doing this in Rare Respiratory, Rare Neurology, Oncology, and Diabetes amongst others. The ability to capture and infuse the patient voice into our work is something I will always be appreciative of and in awe of.” – Farris I.

“I enjoyed the patient ad board we did for a small pharmaceutical company.  We had a chance to hear directly from patients to better understand their unique perspectives as they pertain to a specific disease state.  This kind of intel is incredibly valuable when we are designing support offerings.  Each therapy is unique and nothing brings that home like the voices of patients.”

Cell and Gene – Getting it right in a complex environment, when the person is the product

“One of the most interesting projects I’ve had the pleasure of working on was an international blueprint project involving a cell and gene product. It provided valuable insights into the distinct timelines and regulatory frameworks for drug approval across different countries/markets. Witnessing the contrasting rules regarding information dissemination and manufacturer-customer engagement was particularly fascinating.

This project entailed a comprehensive and intricate blueprint with multiple timelines, reflecting the complexity of the endeavor. However, the significance of this project cannot be overstated, as it greatly assisted the client in their preparations for product launch in diverse markets. Serving as an invaluable guiding tool, the blueprint enabled them to effectively navigate various resources and internal preparations. Engaging in this project was not only intellectually stimulating but also immensely rewarding, as we were able to contribute to our client’s success in global market expansion.” – Emma Z.

“The most impactful project I have worked on so far was developing a fertility support offering for a cell & gene therapy product due to the conditioning phase for the therapy resulted in patient infertility. To combat this, the goal was to provide an opportunity for patients to maintain their reproductive ability through alternate means. It was really inspiring to be involved in a solution that has the potential to truly change someone’s life and hopefully reduce some of the burden caused by that aspect of the treatment decision. My hope is that one day this program helps a patient feel like someone is looking out for them and cares about their future, that once they get through therapy, they have all the opportunities they had beforehand. Perhaps, this solution may even become a precedent for future therapies.” – Lindy V.

“I’ve had the fortune to work on the first CAR-T therapy that was commercialized which paved the way for all cell and gene therapies after that. This therapy was for a pediatric oncology indication and probably the last hope for very sick children.

We helped the product team understand the pain points patients, caregivers and physicians will face from when a patient is identified as a candidate for this therapy through manufacturing, administration, and post-treatment monitoring. As a next step, we helped design the operational support for orders and develop some of the key enablers to bring the order process to life.

The Cell and Gene space has come a long way since then by understanding what worked and what didn’t and evolving the operational model to provide patients and physician exactly what they need – I’ll always be really thankful that I had some small part to play in this!”  -Deepti AK.

Hitting the Links

Last week, the team took a break from work to hit the links for our summer team event. Even though our version of the links really means the mini golf, it was a great day putting around by the lake. The excitement from a hole-in-one or an overly aggressive putt kept everyone in the action. In true Nuvera fashion, the competition for lowest score and best team spirit was heated. And the competition didn’t end on the mini golf course, who knew we had so many secret dart and shuffleboard enthusiasts.

Congrats to the winning team, Flamingos Forever for their lowest score!

MEET THE SQUAD: A Personal Glimpse into Our Team

As we continue to highlight our diverse team, Nuvera is delighted to introduce you to Lindy Vicari, in this month’s Meet the Squad post.

Hi everyone! I’m Lindy and I am a Consultant at Nuvera. I have a background in biochemistry and medical devices. Since joining, I’ve had the pleasure of working alongside my exceptional coworkers to tackle numerous projects, particularly in the Cell & Gene and Oncology spaces.

What led you to this career? I have always been passionate about life sciences, and I knew from a young age that I wanted to study it at the college-level. While I first considered a career in medicine, I was drawn to consulting because it combined the problem-solving and team-work skills that I enjoyed throughout my childhood/young-adult life with my desire to improve the healthcare industry. Consulting allows me to flex a lot of different muscles while simultaneously pushing me to improve as a leader and a strategic thinker.

What’s your go-to productivity trick? When I feel myself staring at a screen for too long or losing productivity, I take a short brain-break to reset. Sometimes I walk around the office or get a foosball game in. Other times I grab a snack or do the NYT mini-crossword. Then, I start with something lighter to get the ball rolling before jumping back into more complex tasks.

What’s your favorite way to unwind after a busy day? After a busy day, I like to unwind by meeting up with friends for golf. On a nice day, I love to get outside at one of the local courses, and if it’s raining or during the winter, there are a couple great indoor simulators to hit at.

What’s one thing that surprised you about working at Nuvera? I was surprised how dedicated and invested Nuvera-veterans are in the career and personal development of team members earlier on in their career. I am routinely asked about how I am doing personally and professionally, and I am encouraged to work outside of my comfort zone. The commitment to my growth motivates me to practice active mindfulness every day and to pass on similar levels of enthusiasm for my teammate’s goals and aspirations.

What’s your favorite sport to watch and which team do you root for? Football is my favorite sport to watch, and the Philadelphia Eagles are my team. My dad and I will call and talk about every game. We’re on a good run right now and I’m hopeful we can get back to the Superbowl this year.

MEET THE SQUAD: A Personal Glimpse into Our Team

Our team members are crucial in Nuvera’s success and in this edition of Meet the Squad, we would like to take a moment to introduce you to one of those team members, Bonnie Hou!

Hello, my name is Bonnie Hou, and I am currently a manager on the Nuvera team. Prior to Nuvera, I worked in the healthcare industry for a decade with a wide range of experiences in finance, global strategy, operations, account management, and project management.

What’s one thing most people don’t know about you? I was an active event emcee in college. When I attended Peking University, there were a lot of student activities and galas like the orientation party for the freshmen, the Chinese New Year celebration, and different business case competitions, etc. It was quite an honor and a pleasure to be the emcee of many events.  

What behavior or personality trait do you most attribute your success to, and why? The courage for new adventures. In both my professional and personal life, my journey is guided by 4 words with an abbreviation of “ABCD: Adventure, Build, Create & Deliver”. Whenever there’s an opportunity for a new adventure, to build something from scratch, to create a solution, and to deliver results, you will find me there.

What’s a trip that changed you, and why? When I was a junior in college, I did a 6-month exchange program at the University of Sydney in Australia. That trip was my first time living abroad and in the southern hemisphere, it truly broadened my horizon. I was fascinated by the diversity of local communities and the food scene.  I was also mesmerized by the beauty of the Opera House, the Darling Harbor, and the Bondi beach. It prepared me well when I came to the US for graduate school as well.

Do you have a hidden talent? What is it? Salsa dancing. My husband and I met through ballroom dancing, and now living in Texas, we love going to salsa nights across the city.

What book are you reading now? The Courage to be Disliked by Ichiro Kishimi. The philosophy in the book is profoundly liberating, allowing the readers to develop the courage to change and ignore the limitations that we and those around us place on ourselves.