Using Social Media to Monitor Postmarket Drug Safety

Law360

Bonnie I. Scott, an Associate in the Health Care and Life Sciences practice, in the firm’s Washington, DC, office, authored an article for Law360 titled “Using Social Media to Monitor Postmarket Drug Safety.” (Read the full version – subscription required.)

Following is an excerpt:

The FDA has recently partnered with PatientsLikeMe, an online patient networking forum, to leverage patient-reported information to bolster its drug safety monitoring efforts. PatientsLikeMe, with its 350,000 members representing over 2,500 health conditions, has collected more than 110,000 adverse event reports on 1,000 different drugs. ... This partnership, which is in the form of a research collaboration agreement, will provide the FDA with access to “real-world” data about patients’ drug and disease experiences (the information provided to the FDA is anonymous; so it does not appear, at least at this time, that the FDA would be able to follow up with patients who post on the forum). More broadly, this partnership is evidence of increasing interest, among both regulators and pharmaceutical manufacturers, in the value of social media as a tool to identify potential adverse drug reactions and safety issues.