Sprout Health Solutions and Takeda Explore Digital Health Tools in Rare Disease During Covid-19


Sprout Health Solutions Limited, a global consultancy specializing in behavior science and health outcomes, has partnered with biopharmaceutical leader Takeda Pharmaceutical Company Limited (“Takeda”) to develop an evidence-based white paper on the use of digital health tools during COVID-19 for people living with rare disease, their families and healthcare professionals.

The comprehensive white paper, “Digital Health Tools in Rare Diseases,” summarizes research conducted by Sprout Health Solutions, with insights from thought leaders and advocates. The findings underscore the critical role of online and mobile technology in delivering education and support, citing opportunities for future innovations to address unmet needs in the global rare disease community.

According to Lina Eliasson, Ph.D., Partner, Sprout Health Solutions, COVID-19 compounded existing difficulties faced by people with rare disease in accessing healthcare and psychological support. The pandemic also provided unprecedented humanitarian and economic stimulus to drive the development and adoption of these technologies at scale and speed.

“The pandemic prompted the digitalization of a pharma-sponsored face-to-face program we were developing for people affected by rare disease,” she said. “We saw firsthand how digital tools vastly increased the reach of self-management and mental health interventions for patients and caregivers. Digital technology also ensured global access to a much broader audience of specialist nurses than originally envisioned.”

The experience inspired the idea for an in-depth study of digital health tools for rare disease. Takeda, with their long-standing commitment to servicing patients, families and caregivers affected by rare disease, co-funded the project with Sprout Health Solutions.

“Our highest priority is our patients,” said Lu Zheng, Ph.D., Senior Director, Head of Global Strategic Patient Services, Takeda. “We realized that COVID-19 has had considerable effects on people living with rare disease, especially their ability to access and afford critical medical care. This paper is part of our ongoing efforts to understand local challenges and adapt our support programs to meet our patients’ evolving needs.”

The white paper features a review of published literature, conducted in January 2021, on the potential impact and effectiveness of digital health tools across a variety of needs in rare disease, including disease self-management, mental health support and caregiver support. It also includes contributions from thought leaders in rare disease, including a patient advocate, physician, psychotherapist and industry experts.

About Sprout Health Solutions
Sprout Health Solutions design and deliver person-centered strategies and programs for improved health and regulatory success worldwide. They work with global clients in pharma, biotech and digital health, delivering support programs and clinical trial endpoint strategies across a wide range of therapeutic areas. For more information visit https://sprout-hs.com