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Getting Wired for a World of Individuals

Executive Summary

Four converging forces--consumer activism, advances in information management, improved medical technology, and scientific progress--will transform health care and put individual patient-consumers at the heart of the process. Any pharmaceutical company that wants to serve this new market will need to collect personal data from millions of people, and use the information it already owns more effectively, in order to produce better and more economical drugs.Building an electronic infrastructure that will enable a pharmaceutical company to do these things is a major challenge because of the variety of sources, multiplicity of formats, and complexity of the data Pharma must handle. But the emerging e-business technologies--including the Internet, new data warehousing tools, and increasingly sophisticated management systems--will provide a solution to many of these problems. And some industry leaders are already exploring their potential.

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