How Astellas, Merck KGaA, Darmstadt, Germany MLR Teams View the Modular Content Evolution

Today, as life sciences companies execute omnichannel strategies, they share promotional and medical content across many channels and deliver personalized customer experiences. Modular content offers a solution to help medical, legal, and regulatory (MLR) teams address the challenge of providing more personalized content efficiently and compliantly. But achieving this goal requires a fresh mindset and approach.

I recently sat down with Dr. Stephanie Loesch, director, global advertising and promotion processes and standards, AdPromo at Merck KGaA, Darmstadt, Germany, Dr. Tim Patel, U.K. medical director at Astellas, and Dr. Rina Newton, compliance expert, to discuss how to engage MLR teams in the modular content journey effectively.

“The vision of modular content is an intuitive and easy-to-use approach,” said Loesch. “So, the increase in efficiency will be with the review since teams use pre-approved modules for multiple uses across channels. I expect a much quicker approval time, which will ensure speed to market.”

Modular content drives MLR evolution

Today, a content evolution is occurring. With the rapid increase in the quantity of content, MLR teams need to become more agile and change their ways of working. Teams can enhance approval efficiency by using pre-approved modules and a tier-based approach.

“When you ask about change, to me, there are two ways — revolution or evolution,” said Rina Newton, compliance expert. “I see modular content’s benefits as an evolution in compliance because we don’t want to take our eyes off the ball when it comes to compliance or quality. The advent of modular content has forced people to think better, earlier, more strategically. And that’s an evolution.”

Rina Newton shares a helpful list of 23 contributory factors in approval efficiency.

Plan and involve MLR teams early

From concept to alignment to plans and execution, the earlier you involve your MLR teams, the better. A good approach is for teams to define the process and business rules and consider global and local stakeholders to set the right foundations.

“In today’s world, we need speed and agility,” said Tim Patel, who, as a medic, is ultimately responsible for signing off the final version of content before it can be released. “There’s more content, evidence, conferences, and data. There’s a real advantage in having modular content, and medics need to get involved a lot earlier to get the foundation right. Ideally, you want to build the content map and channels you want to use for the year rather than panicking when you need an approved email after a conference.”

The role of automation in MLR

While getting to 100% MLR automation in our industry is impossible, technology can take care of the basic checks and make the most of MLR experts’ time by reducing the number of tedious tasks. As teams work toward automation, there will always be a degree of manual checking involved.

“When we think about automation, adopting technology to check content versus an approved claims library can save 70% to 80% of reviews,” Newton said. “Certainly, if we can take that away, we are making the process less painful and frustrating. So you still have the review approver stepping in to give the judgment, the subjective piece at the end.”

Read more about how to engage MLR teams in your modular content journey.

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