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The Story of HS: A Patient Journey

By: AbbVie
With support from: TVF Communications

Summary of work

In 2015, with the pending licence for Humira® (adalimumab) in the treatment of moderate-to-severe Hidradenitis Suppurativa(HS) in adults due late July, the UK HS Team identified the need for an internal, multi-stakeholder, blended learning programme, to provide educational information based on stakeholder needs.

This led to development of the HS Patient Journey eLearning initiative - providing a novel and innovative way to engage customers in discussion, by teaching about the disease course from the patients’ perspective. The journey flows through life-before-illness, early disease signs and aetiology, the diagnostic procedure; through initial GP and subsequent specialist consultations, treatment options, ending with the value of Humira® as a treatment option. A fictional character ‘Ella’ is the personal patient guide throughout the programme - aligning patient and learning journeys.

We aimed to completely immerse learners within the patient experience, through skilled writing, videos, and interactive elements - accentuating the need for appropriate, timely diagnosis and treatment. Incorporating market research provided real-life anecdotes, and real patient quotes and videos support Ella’s journey.

Confidence levels within AbbVie stakeholders have significantly increased since this training. Externally, Ashfield nurses reported considerable improvements in their HS knowledge compared to other Humira® indications, and requested this format across the board.

Judges' comments

The Story of HS took an innovative approach to training in a new therapy area. It was really refreshing to see the work incorporate research into the patient journey, bringing to life training in a disease area from the patient's perspective. With the addition of pre and post assessment, this was an excellent  patient-centred approach to training compared to approaches normally taken.


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Key dates

Entry deadline 26 August 2021
Extended entry deadline 2 September 2021*
*additional fee applies
Judging Day 1 October 2021
Company of the Year Interviews 22 October 2021
PMEA Event 24 November 2021