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Improving Patient Care Through Medical Communications: Rebecca McCracken’s Perspective

Episode Summary

Welcome to the Transforming Medical Communications podcast brought to you by MedComms Experts; I am your host, Wesley Portegies. This podcast explores the dynamic landscape of medical communication strategies, innovations, and challenges. We aim to facilitate insightful conversations that contribute to advancing effective medical communications practices.

Joining us today is Rebecca McCracken, a Senior Director of Global Scientific Communications and Publications. We discuss transforming medical communications and improving patient care. Rebecca highlights the importance of accurate information, collaboration, and prioritizing patient-centered care. 

Guest at a Glance

Rebecca is a Scientific Communications expert with 15 years of experience in the biopharma industry. She has demonstrated her expertise in global medical affairs, medical affairs innovation, development, and implementation of strategic, comprehensive global scientific communications and publications plans. Rebecca is also an expert in global congress strategy, scientific communications strategy for product and indication launches, cross-functional collaboration with internal and external global stakeholders, and team building and leadership.

Host at a Glance

Wesley Portegies is the CEO and Founder of MedComms Experts, a company offering a unique blend of talent, expertise, and resources to create effective medical communication strategies. Wesley is an experienced entrepreneur, starting his first company at 19 years old and building multiple successful companies from scratch. Driven by a passion for medical communications, Wesley has over 20 years of experience in the medical industry – both agency and client side.

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Key Highlights

  • 02:56 – 03:41 – The Evolution of Medical Communications

Rebecca explains that digital innovation in medical communications has been pivotal for its evolution over the past 15-20 years. From downloading text on your phone to accessing videos and scanning QR codes, the scope of med comms has expanded exponentially. There has also been a change in how med comms is used to collaborate with patient organizations and patient advocacy groups. 

“I think the digital component, the digital innovation, is the biggest innovation that jumps out at me”.  

  • 10:28 – 13:34 – How Pharma Companies Can Drive the Reach of Medical Communications

Rebecca mentions that over the last 15-20 years, medical communications have gotten behind the curve from a timing and strategic perspective. She stresses that medical communications must be timed much earlier in the disease and treatment cycles. The word needs to be spread earlier in the cycle and with greater frequency. At a strategic level, the information must be distributed across different platforms, including publications, short videos, digital animation, booth materials, and podcasts. 

“You don’t want to say we need this right now and then put it together. You’re gonna have a delay in actually getting visibility. So the sooner you get it out, the more visibility you can start driving within your audience and where you need to”.

  • 30:33 – 33:23 – Advice for Professional Growth in Med Comms

Rebecca’s first piece of advice for young professionals in medical communications is to be willing to challenge the norm and speak out when they have an idea that pushes the norm. The next must-do is to always look at the big picture, it’s not just about next year’s plan. Instead, think of the requirements of several years ahead. The third bit of advice is to always think of patient needs first and evaluate the impact of your medical communications decisions from the lens of patient care and benefit. 

“We don’t get to fail because if we communicate the wrong information or if we communicate it to the wrong people, that will ultimately affect a patient”.

The host of Transforming Medical Communications

Wesley Portegies
CEO and Founder of MedComms Experts

Hi there,

I am the host of the Transforming Medical Communications podcast.

Our field is being left in the dust by the cutting-edge communication methods and practices in other industries. We’re going to change that. On Transforming Medical Communications we talk to the biggest and brightest names in Medical Affairs & Communications to find out what they’re doing to push our industry forward and define the future.

If you are interested in participating in an interview, please reach out to us.

Yes, I’d like to participate