The pharma industry needs to embrace digital in order to deliver the products and services of the future. But PwC UK partner Johnathon Marshall asks, is it ready?

The pharma sector still has some way to go to embed the digital agenda, said Johnathon Marshall, PwC UK pharma and life sciences partner. “The pharma industry has focused most of its attention on patient and physician engagement through the adoption of disease management apps.”

Marshall said that the pharma industry needs to follow other industries and embrace new technologies, from augmented reality and radio-frequency ID (RFID)tag-controlled manufacturing facilities to proactive marketing and promotion management in the retail environment.

“The sector is facing a real challenge as it looks to embrace emerging technologies in both the manufacture and delivery of new therapies. The movement to smaller batch sizes, combination therapies, biopharma products, regenerative meds and cell therapies will require a significant overhaul of supply strategies and models, and will need bravery and discipline to deliver in a cost efficient manner,” Marshall said.

Words by John Kennedy