How “The Patients’ Perspective” Helped Abbott Make Humira #1 Drug Worldwide

Humira is an exemplary example of how listening to your customers and the market makes a difference.

Here at Drug Market Info, we call that “The Patients’ Perspective.”

Perhaps we should have seen it coming even before Humira was approved by the FDA. Three months following its submission, Abbott was notified by the FDA to expect approval before the end of the year – 4 months ahead of schedule! Humira was approved New Year’s Eve 2002 and made available to patients just 13 days later – a credit to the commercialization team and the company.

Perhaps we should have taken notice that Humira was destined to be a winner given the dedication required of the marketing group during that launch as well as the disciplined pursuit of additional clinical indications by Abbott’s R & D group over the years.

Humira never had safety or efficacy advantages compared to other products in the class. What it did have was a dosing advantage that translated into convenience for patients. And this probably helped Abbott stay focused and close to their customers. It was a winning strategy for all; thousands of patients now lead fulfilled, less painful lives, and within 10 years, Humira has become the top-selling drug in the world.

We at Drug Market Info aren’t entirely surprised by Abbott’s success with Humira because we believe the key to success with pharmaceuticals lies in understanding how patients feel about and deal with their diseases and therapies. So our reports are designed to help companies assess a market with not only the relevant disease, therapeutic, market and pipeline data, but also with the critical perspective of patients. In our updated 2012 Psoriasis Market Info™ report, for the first time ever, we note that Humira prescriptions surpassed those of market leader Enbrel among dermatologists using biologics for psoriasis.

And as a final tribute to the success of Abbott, isn’t it interesting that the former market leader now appears to be tapping into what’s important to patients. Currently, Enbrel is being promoted with actual patients touting the long-term experience with Enbrel — a central concern of psoriasis patients.


Posted on April 19, 2012, in Patients' Perspective, Psoriasis and tagged , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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