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JPA Health: Driving the future of Health Communication and Patient Engagement

JPA Health
Carrie Jones Founder Principal

While taking a brief note of the healthcare industry undergoing a technological revolution, we are compelled to draw assumptions over certain questions. What more can we expect? How far will the waves of this revolution take the industry? What new healthcare benefits and advancements are we going to see in the coming years?

It is safe to say that these questions are essentially intriguing in their very nature, and we believe, so is the future of healthcare. However, a plethora of organizations across the globe have been leveraging this development, planting their best foot forward and thus, delivering innovative products and solutions.

We at Insights Care constantly endeavor to seek and exhibit such organizations which are outright altering the course of healthcare for good. With this motto in mind, we present to you, JPA Health, an award-winning health communications firm renowned for crafting targeted, high-impact programs for nonprofit, pharmaceutical and government clients.

Carrie Jones, the Founder and Principal at JPA Health, expresses her opinion on how the organization ensures its integrated solutions are the best in the market. She says, “Our agency leaders combine the best of art and science when designing patient engagement programs. The art is subjective, based on experience and tapping into emotional drivers. The science is much more objective. For this, our team leverages data and market dynamics to inform their strategic recommendations.”

At JPA, the team believes that an effective patient engagement program must take the following into consideration: First, it should address an unmet need by filling a gap in the patient journey. Second, it should have a mechanism for a two-way dialogue. Third, a good engagement program should be authentic. This means that it should be designed as a genuine solution to help patients and nimble enough to adjust as their needs change.

Carrie also believes that as an integrated agency, JPA doesn’t need to provide clients with ‘off the shelf’ solutions. “We are a market leader because our programs are tailor made to address the needs of our clients. We can pull from our expertise in brand marketing, scientific communications and patient advocacy to guarantee that we are designing programs that will help our clients be successful,” she adds.

Delivering Innovation

Coming to JPA’s Offerings, Carrie elaborates on some of the tools that redefine the benchmarks of patient engagement.

Over the last decade, JPA has built the largest collection of health influencer data ever amassed. This power tool, known as Gretel, brings together news media, organizations and individual influencers to show for the first time precisely how they intersect. This powerful engine combines human and artificial intelligence to generate insights, such as who are the influencers, how they receive information and the most appropriate way to engage with them. Gretel is now composed of millions of data points and continues to get smarter with each new input. This specialized approach enables the JPA team to identify opportunities and engage target audiences.

Gretel is unique from monitoring and social listening tools, which primarily focus on the what and the where. It goes a step further and identifies the influence of an outlet, individual or organization based on how frequently it is referenced or shared by specific audience segments within a specific issue or topic.

Using the millions of data points within Gretel, JPA’s team of experts in marketing, media and advocacy can quickly zero in on the influencers and partners that will enable the company’s clients to reach and engage their customers and communities.

Over the years, JPA has consistently found that patients want accessibility, information and choice.  The company’s pharma and biotech clients want to better understand these desires so they can provide meaningful solutions to address these wishes. That is why it developed a library of tools to help clients better understand the patient experience.

One tool utilized by many clients, is the JPA Profiler. This innovate resource provides a deep analysis of local, national and international patient and professional organizations. Custom research includes:

  • Mission, focus, reach and primary audiences
  • Perceived credibility, influence and political impact
  • Existing partnerships and/or funding streams
  • Unique assets or areas of interest (i.e., clinical trials, disease education, patient support services)

Once the mapping is complete, JPA’s advocacy team applies a proven process to analyze strengths and identify appropriate partners. Organizations are ranked based on pre-determined criteria. These rankings are displayed in easy-to-read charts, allowing for targeting of organizations for specific activities.

Integration of real-time social media data makes this tool the most current, customizable database for organizational contacts and events. The Profiler is built on a powerful and secure cloud database assuring that all data remains safe and secure. All interactions are performed with SSL security and work across browsers and mobile devices.

One of the most powerful tools JPA employs for patient engagement is its P.A.V.E. (Patient Ambassador for Value and Education) Program designed to inspire patients to take an active role in their healthcare.

The program begins by identifying patients interested in sharing their journey and the JPA team helping them to articulate their story in a memorable and meaningful manner. With patient ambassadors deployed across the country, we’ve helped raise awareness about diseases and health conditions. The company’s team of writers, video producers and digital storytellers collaborate closely with patients to share their experiences with others.

JPA Health has a number of other tools designed to help its clients uncover valuable insights that inform the brand strategy. These include Patient Journey Mapping and conducting Patient Advisory Board Meetings.

Most recently, the agency has built a new tool, MedVault, to support Medical Affairs and Clinical teams within pharmaceutical companies. JPA’s MedVault technology is a digital app that allows users to access all clinical data quickly and easily on the go.

The app acts as a streamlined database containing all the relevant trial information and results data in one place, so that anyone—from medical affairs to sales—can become an immediate expert. With an interface that’s easy to navigate, MedVault can be uniquely tailored for your business needs and can hold data from various disease areas – including oncology, immunology, and diabetes.

Knowing What’s Necessary

Commenting on the need for Patient advocacy and how it helps the related community, Carrie says, “Patient advocacy has evolved significantly since the days when breast cancer advocates staged a mock funeral at Genentech’s headquarters and AIDS activists chained themselves to the gates of the FDA. With increased scrutiny and an emphasis by regulators on patient-focused drug development, industry can no longer afford to consider advocacy relations an afterthought; it is now an essential part of business strategy.”

“This can range from helping companies understand the complexities within any given patient community, guiding them on appropriate ways to partner with patient and professional organizations, designing meaningful disease education programs to helping ensure access to new treatment options,” she adds.

Regarding the role of media services in patient engagement, Carrie is of the opinion that, a program designed to help patients does zero benefit if no one knows about it. Pertaining to this, she states that every single one of JPA’s patient engagement programs have robust outreach efforts to ensure that patients, care partners and health care providers have an awareness of the program and can connect patients to these valuable resources when they need them most.

Exhibiting Excellence

JPA has received a number of prestigious awards for delivering exceptional quality and results for its clients. Most recently, JPA’s approach and successes have earned the agency the designation of “Health Care Agency of the Year” in Ragan’s Health Care PR and Marketing Awards (September 2019).  In July 2019, the agency was recognized by MM&M as a top agency in medical marketing and communications in its prestigious Top 100 Agency report.

In January 2019, Carrie was recognized as a PRNews’ Top Women in PR honoree. She is an active member of the PR Council and Board Member for 2015, 2016, 2017 and the International PR Network (IPRN). IPRN is a global network of independent public relations firms. The network includes members from 30 countries, including emerging and developing markets such as Brazil, China and Eastern Europe. Carrie served as the IPRN Chair in 2015.

Irrespective of the awards and recognitions, JPA measures itself on client satisfaction. Each year the firm surveys its clients from the past year about reliability, budget, stewardship, client services, timeliness, quality, busines relations, personnel and responsiveness. The 2018 survey returned a 9.23 overall satisfaction rating and a 9.75 rating specifically on satisfaction with JPA staff attitude, courtesy and professionalism.

JPA Health Communications is poised to grow 20 percent in 2019, enabling it to add additional talent and specialty services to the firm. Over the last year, JPA has added several new staff to its bench, including a Creative Director and Medical Director.

JPA’s offices are strategically located to support its clients. The headquarters is based in Washington, DC, the epicenter of health policy and location of many patient and professional organizations. The company’s office in Boston makes sense, as Greater Boston is home to almost 1,000 biotechnology companies, ranging from small start-ups to billion-dollar pharmaceutical companies. JPA also has an office in London, UK, where it is able to support clients with UK, EU and global programs.



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