Mary Alice Dwyer PharmD, is a Principal/Consultant at Medical Innovation and Insights who has spent 28 years in the medicines industry, including four of those involved in all aspects of patient engagement across the medicines development continuum.

Dr Dwyer wished to become involved in reviewing projects for the Book of Good Practices because, in her words, she wished “to contribute to raising awareness of what good looks like when engaging patients”.

Dr Dwyer explains she was impressed by the overall quality of the projects sent for review. “I liked the range/variety of submissions, very different applications,” she notes.

She adds that she felt the projects that demonstrated the most collaboration with the patients or caregivers in the design and development of the solution were those that were most likely to succeed.  

“When patients/caregivers were involved early to agree what the needs were, and what the solution could be, these were the most likely to have a lasting effect and make the most impact,” she explains.

In terms of advice to future applicants submitting their projects for consideration for the BOGP, Dr Dwyer has an array of suggestions. “Involve patients early in the design, do small pilots or feedback sessions from a variety of stakeholders and involve everyone in deciding what ‘good/great’ would look like and use that information to identify some metrics and key indicators of effect,” she says.

According to Dr Dwyer, the Book of Good Practices will be an essential read for veterans of patient engagement, as well as those just beginning to embrace the concept.

“I believe the Book of Good Practices is an incredible tool, both for those experienced in patient engagement and those who are just beginning to explore what good patient engagement looks like. It not only establishes the fundamental criteria for meaningful engagement but also provide ideas and examples of how patient engagement can be done.  A wonderful reference tool!”