Shot in the Arm: COVID-19 Boost to RWD - PharmaVOICE (March 2021)
Times Have Changed
It’s early 2021 in the Northeast and a major snowstorm has just been announced. Schools will be closed for the next two days. Kids will be home and likely, quite happy to be off from school. Under normal circumstances, parents would be home too, trying to work and probably attempting to create some sort of scheduled structure for the kids. But this is post-2020 and COVID-19 has all but erased what we used to call snow days. Snowstorms and hail may come, but the children can now continue with school as though nothing happened at all. We have all heard it a thousand times, but these truly are unprecedented times — COVID-19 has upended the world as we knew it.
While the snow day-nostalgic kids may disagree, the pandemic has simultaneously created many opportunities for individuals, brands, companies, industries, and nations alike. The raging pandemic forced us to withdraw and physically isolate. Healthcare (battling the pandemic) and technology (combatting the physical isolation) were two of most affected and transformed industries. The race to find a cure for COVID-19 accelerated the adoption of several processes, methodologies, and technologies from which will all benefit for many years to come. Real-world data (RWD) and the resulting real-world evidence (RWE) saw a major boost during this time, in part because both straddle the intersection of healthcare and technology. As a data practitioner in a healthcare organization that helps clients drive behavior change, the impact of RWD and RWE hits close to home.