Campana & Schott’s Life Sciences clients put a lot of emphasis on the importance of rigorous Societal Impact assessments in their business strategies and operations. They speak to us about “the impact of their product on the caregiver” and “the shift from making a doctor’s appointment to consulting Amazon” and “the overall possibilities of earlier prevention and increased health literacy.” The sheer breadth of considerations that can be included in measurement definitions becomes as complex as the question of credible quantification.
In Life Sciences, particularly in the field of Health Economics and Outcomes Research (HEOR), there is limited consensus on acceptable elements of value. Health Technology Assessment (HTA) bodies, ESG reporting practitioners, healthcare policymakers, and other stakeholders need to further nurture efforts to agree on a "single" impact inventory. As one leader put it, “One of the shortcomings of any framework right now is its lack of acceptance or even reference by some of our most important health authorities.”
A robust framework needs to account for disease specifics and the differences of therapeutic areas when capturing health benefits and unmet medical needs. Economic effects should cover both productivity gains and many more aspects like community spillovers, caregiver burden, the broader community, future generations, and the advancement of scientific knowledge.
Value-based pricing strategies, personalized medicine, digital solutions, and industry shifts from treatment to cure and prevention also deserve reflection. After all, a fulsome Societal Impact framework needs to honestly cover adverse medical and financial effects to gain credibility and trust in society.
Gone are the days when a financial bottom line was the sole driver of a company's decision-making, operations, and success – and rightly so. Companies can transform in profitable ways and simultaneously increase positive Societal Impact. This, in turn, will drive a more sustainable future and give everyone something to rally around.