The technology wing of the Mercy health system has created a real-world evidence (RWE) network that will pool data from providers, Mercy announced Tuesday.
Medical device and pharma companies can subscribe to the network, giving them access to RWE to support their development, regulatory and commercial activities.
The creation of the network furthers Mercy’s move into RWE, which has seen it enter into deals with BD, Johnson & Johnson and Medtronic in recent years.
Working with SAP, Mercy Technology Services (MTS) has designed the network to expand on the RWE repository generated by its parent organization, which is one of the largest healthcare systems in the U.S. By adding to the existing Mercy data, MTS hopes to create the largest global database of RWE.
MTS envisages providers across the U.S. adding de-identified patient data to the repository. In return, providers will gain the chance to use the RWE inform their own decisions and generate a new source of revenue.
The money will come from medical device and pharma companies that subscribe to the database. MTS says the database, which will initially focus on orthopedic, cardiology and oncology evidence, has advantages over the other sources of RWE currently available to medical product developers.
MTS contrasted the "curated data" it plans to provide with the "data dumps" typically offered to drug and device companies. The claimed difference stems from the deployment of data scientists, who Mercy tasks with organizing the information uploaded by providers and using it to answer questions. MTS also says the data itself has advantages over other RWE sources, such as registry data because it can provide insights into what happens at the clinical practice level.
MTS has a track record in RWE. Since 2017, MTS has entered into a series of RWE deals with device manufacturers, starting with a partnership with Medtronic to analyze the real-world factors that influence how patients respond to cardiac resynchronization therapy.
Similar agreements with J&J and BD followed in 2018 and 2019.
"Having the ability to study patient care pathways and conditions before and after exposure to a medical device is crucial to understanding how those devices perform outside of the controlled clinical trial setting," Rick Kuntz, SVP of strategic scientific operations at Medtronic, said in a statement.
Mercy is also involved in the FDA-backed National Evaluation System for Health Technology Coordinating Center and expects federal health agencies to be among the users of its RWE.