How do the existing systems work and what are HCPs and patient needs?
At the early idea generation stage, innovators need to spend time reviewing evidence and conducting research to understand the current landscape and therapy area, identify the key clinical or patient unmet needs and how the product or service may help to solve the need. This stage is crucial to complete before taking an idea forward to development and will underpin the commercial success of any innovative idea.
So how do you do it?
Establish your evidence base:
Systematic reviews and academic research can be a great starting point to help provide a great insight into current unmet needs and challenges with a specific therapy area. For information about how to conduct an evidence review please see the evidence toolkit website http://www.nhsevidencetoolkit.net/resources/further-information/
Understand the clinical pathway and current landscape:
A crucial step at this stage is to understand the current pathway and competitive landscape. This will help provide insight into where your product or service may fit in the current system and whether needs align with your solution. There are a number of resources that you can use to scope out the existing therapeutic landscape before you engage with key stakeholders:
- The NICE pathway tool is an easy-to-use platform to understand existing treatment pathways and clinical recommendations https://pathways.nice.org.uk/
- To understand the current competitive landscape with regards to Medical Devices and Diagnostics review NHS supply chain https://www.supplychain.nhs.uk/ and the MHRA public access registrar https://aic.mhra.gov.uk/era/pdr.nsf/name?openpage&start=1&count=200
- To understand the current competitive landscape with regards to digital health products, NHS app library https://apps.beta.nhs.uk/ and ORCHA https://www.orcha.co.uk/ are great places to start