Global Head of Data Governance and Insights
How can data be activated to create better healthcare outcomes? Dr. Victoria Gamerman, the Global Head of Data Governance and Insights at Boehringer Ingelheim, offers that part of the answer is that data is changing to be thought of as part of the broader healthcare “ecosystem.” Listen in for more of Victoria’s takes on how data can improve healthcare.
“We will see that part of the digital transformation of healthcare will continue to evolve. And at the same time, we have to also be aware of the context that health data is collected in; a good example, maybe during COVID, when really we have a traditionally in a hospital, for example, units, a cardiac unit and yet when you have this influx of patients with COVID coming in, any bed is an available bed. And now that data and how it gets captured, really, what is truth and what is that single source of truth and how then do we interpret it? So the idea that I, as a patient would be able to have one place where I can go, and I see all of my connected healthcare information, hopefully my well-care information, not just the sick care data, and that it's all there.”
Access to data in healthcare has long been fraught with difficulty. In part, this is due to privacy concerns. Victoria contends that patients must have their health information centrally located and then have the ability to provide access to only those who need it. Additionally, she mentions that patients must be assured that the data in this setting will be used solely for their benefit.
“The exciting piece about this is also the evolution of that evidence, the idea of what problems are we solving the strategic component to thinking about the data storytelling and what that data is giving us and what doors it's unlocking for us. And the combination of that with this medicine and clinical research domain expertise is what will allow us to best serve patients that are the patients of today and the patients of, further away in the future. So data driven is an important element of it because it also allows us or data-informed.”
Victoria describes a connection between “science and data” and “data storytelling.” For her, telling the story of the data is part of developing a strategy. She makes the point that these elements alongside “medicine and clinical research domain expertise” creates better care for patients.
“Design thinking from a data perspective is to me, is related to also an element of, um, data leadership and driving towards this evidence-based, uh, strategic decision making that we are required to do. We're informed by this combination of the data and the knowledge, and that requires knowing the needs of our stakeholders. Being able to empathize with those who are asking the questions so that we can really understand, for example, what job as Clayton Christensen would say, what job they have, what jobs need to be done, and what problem they're actually trying to solve. Again, it resonates with the data translator theme, the ability to be able to understand the stakeholders, then take this often varied and broad question, bring it down and define it in terms of some testable ideas around which we either have data. We need to gather data and collect certain data.”
Focusing on the consumer is what design thinking is all about. Victoria sees design thinking as “knowing the needs of our stakeholders.” She draws attention to the importance of empathy to really understand the needs of “stakeholders.” At the end of the day, empathy and care for others is the guiding light when striving for innovations.
It is of the core foundation. Healthcare and the clinical development is driven by science and data. That’s how we get insights. That’s how we derive information. And yet the exciting piece about this is also the evolution of that evidence [and] the idea of what problems are we solving [and] the strategic component to thinking about the data storytelling and what that data is giving us [and] what doors it’s unlocking for us. And the combination of that with this medicine and clinical research domain expertise is what will allow us to best serve patients that are the patients of today and the patients of further away in the future.
Design thinking from a data perspectives is… related to also an element of data leadership and driving towards this evidence based strategic decision making that we are required to do. We’re informed by this combination of the data and the knowledge, and that requires knowing the needs of our stakeholders.
You can read about a domain, but if you are not able to understand or… empathize with the stakeholders that you're talking to [or] with your boss — if you don't know.... what keeps your boss up at night and how you're contributing to solving those problems, it could be really hard to get that first promotion or even get that foot in the door in an interview.
“I am a curious thought and people leader focused on improving healthcare by connecting the dots among patient-centricity, digital health, and real-world evidence to evolve clinical research through innovation and digital transformation.
As Global Head of Data Governance and Insights, I am accountable for shaping the data strategy and data governance for Clinical Development and Operations. Previously, I was the Head of Health Informatics and Analytics where I established the strategic priorities based on needs from Medical and Commercial stakeholders. As a team of data scientists, we executed use cases to generate evidence from external clinical data and real-world health care data in support of drug development.
I have formal training with a PhD and MS in Biostatistics from the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine and MA/BA in Mathematics from Boston University. I am also trained in Scrum/Agile methodologies (Product Owner and Scrum Master) as well as Design Thinking. I currently teach in the Applied Analytics program as an Adjunct Scholar-Professional Lecturer at Columbia University.
I enjoy connecting with others who support the use of data to generate insights, especially with innovative applications to advance the health of patients!”