Monthly Archives: September 2017


Al Jalila announces 2 Emirati recipients of mental health fellowships

      Last month in Dubai, the Al Jalila Foundation, in partnership with The Carter Center, has announced two UAE recipients of the 2017-2018 Rosalynn Carter Fellowships for Mental Health Journalism program. Selected from a pool of highly competitive applicants, the two Emiratis join the 21st annual class and 200 journalists who have been awarded the fellowships to date from around the world. The program is the first mental health fellowship program for journalists in the Middle East, launched in 2016 in the UAE by Al Jalila Foundation with two journalism Fellows. Dr Raja Easa Al Gurg, Chairperson of […]


Experiencing facts with a fresh perspective — and the results you can achieve

  Here is an instance from my he bio-pharma work when N-of-8 listening and research produced significant results. A mid-sized biopharmaceutical company with a promising pipeline of new therapies exemplified this.  Back in 2003, the drugs in research seemed to be in disparate categories:  Crohn’s disease, MS, and Alzheimer’s disease.  Then during N-of-8 groups, we asked a naïve question, “Is there any connection between them?”  This childlike curiosity led us on an intriguing pursuit of a neuro-gastro commonality and we found an emerging appreciation of the brain-gut connection. By looking at the company’s existing research with a fresh perspective, we […]


N-of-8 Advisory Boards: a typical agenda

            This kind of agenda allows you to explore many aspects of your brand assumptions in a structured, guided way.  For example, you’ll better understand why patients might prefer a new agent, why physicians might consider your new device more progressive medicine, or why laboratory directors might regard your new test as a simpler process of diagnosis. When we facilitate an N-of-8 group, I have a separate team in the room whose jobs it is to listen and translate.  Not just transcribe or take the notes.  But to listen toward certain issues, topics, and subjects.  […]


Rally for Medical Research planned 9/14 in Washington, DC

The Ad Hoc Group for Medical Research published an ad in the Wall Street Journal and Politico on May 23, 2017, thanking Congress for its support of medical research and recommending continued progress in FY 2018. The Ad Hoc Group for Medical Research is a coalition of patient and voluntary health groups, medical and scientific societies, academic and research organizations, and industry that support enhancing the federal investment in the biomedical, behavioral, and population-based research conducted and supported by the NIH. More than 300 organizations and institutions across the NIH stakeholder community recommend $36.2 billion for NIH in FY 2018, including funds provided through […]


Book review: THE ANTIDOTE, by Barry Werth

    “Today’s medicines can cost hundreds of thousands of dollars a year. The story of how two companies set prices for their costly new drugs suggests that the way we determine the value of such treatments will help decide the future of our health-care system,” writes Barry Werth in the MIT Technology Review.   In “A Tale of Two Drugs,”, he writes that the advent of these more targeted, more effective drugs will introduce the prospect of ever-rising prices, highly effective and ultra-­expensive so-called orphan drugs like Kalydeco may impose a stricter rubric for determining the price of all […]