DTx mobilize our inner motivation – an underrated determinant of health 

by Artur Olesch

For Clara Campàs Moya, health technologies are about assisting individuals on their treatment and prevention journey. As a Managing Partner and Co-Founder of Asabys Partners, Clara has recently joined the board of directors at Sidekick Health. In an interview with journalist Artur Olesch, she shares her vision of life-changing digital therapies for patients.

A pharmacist by training, a scientist by practice, an innovator by passion – with 20 years of experience in the pharmaceutical industry, Clara Campàs Moya understands the healthcare market inside out. In her view, after decades of impressive progress in medical sciences, it is time for healthcare and pharma companies to get closer to the patient.

And digital technologies can trigger the shift from the system where healthcare providers and pharma companies deliver medical services and medicines to a new approach based on an interaction with communities and individuals. 

 

Gamified experience for patients. Improved cost-outcome for health insurers

“Once you explore the data and available studies, you start believing in how DTx can transform the quality of care,” says Clara Campàs Moya.

When designed in compliance with behavioral science and behavioral economics principles, clinically proven, and adjustable to individuals’ habits or needs, DTx can significantly impact well-being and chronic patient therapies. They boost motivation and engagement and thus improve measurable indicators like compliance and adherence. 

“For the patient living with a disease day by day, it’s incredibly demanding to follow various recommendations. Sometimes the treatment depends not only on taking pills but rethinking their lifestyle. When gamification elements embedded in the Sidekick platform facilitate small healthy decisions and actions, it’s already a big gain for the individuals,” says Clara.

“Every patient has their own perception of illness and needs personalized support. Every incentive, guideline, and piece of feedback that shows whether you are staying on track impacts the behavior. DTx harnesses this power, offering a completely new experience”.

This modern approach to providing healthcare services that employ patient engagement is a fourfold win – the patients, payers, health providers, and healthcare system all benefit.

Take, for instance, the patient journey. For the first time, everybody has a chance to follow up on the treatment or prevention outcomes in real-time. Just by installing an app and logging into the platform, patients can take control of the management of their disease.

The existing transactional model in healthcare must be remodeled. “Health insurers, public or private, want to know if what they are paying for brings true value to the patient. This is not surprising – health expenditures are rising rapidly, disproportionately to the outcomes.”

Clara claims that present healthcare challenges force the reinvention of reimbursement strategies. DTx helps to capture and monitor the actual effects of the treatment. “I observe many health insurance companies raising their hands and saying ‘check.’ They want to make the best of the limited amount of money they have. And most importantly, the savings from this value-oriented and rational management of resources go back to the patient.”

 

Sidekick Health platform empowers patients 

Clara Campàs Moya is convinced that the potential advantages of DTx have been incorporated into the Sidekick platform. “When we invest, we always aim to improve patients’ health. And Sidekick is ready to co-accomplish this mission. I was surprised by their mature business philosophy. The team is eager to address one of the biggest healthcare challenges, which is behavior change. They managed to build something which is clinically validated and scalable across different therapeutics platforms.” Clara points out that, unlike many novel technologies, it’s not a “nice to have” fancy tool. Instead, it is a product that is designed from the ground up to fit the users’ needs and to be their assistant for better health prevention or a companion for chronic patients. And all this while maintaining the highest privacy and data security standards.

What fascinates me most is the improved clinical outcomes of patients using DTx versus patients treated in a classical manner. The fact that the patient can switch their self-perception is crucial. It’s much more meaningful than a technology that only reminds you to take a pill,” argues Clara.

“From my point of view as an investor, I admire how Sidekick is scaling up the solution by focusing on the complex value chain. The platform integrates all components of healthcare into one seamless care continuum. We’ve reviewed over 100 digital therapeutics companies in the last couple of years. Sidekick has what is needed to make a change in healthcare: vision, team, technology, strategy, determination.” 

Healthcare in the future will be substantially different. What was unbelievable before the COVID-19 pandemic is routine today. Telecare and remote health monitoring have helped millions of patients while saving lives and improving care quality. Digital health has become a part of our everyday reality. Clara Campàs Moya concludes, “Emerging health technologies will open the door to a new prevention experience – unnoticeable but highly personalized and effective once assistants will take care of us day and night.”

 

Asabys Partners is a venture capital firm from Barcelona investing in highly innovative and transformative technologies, focusing on the health-tech and biopharma industries. Driven by the mission of pushing the boundaries of science and medicine, Asabys Partners finances the most disruptive technologies and collaborates with the best talents of our industry.