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BREATHE and IQVIA collaboration to accelerate early diagnosis of respiratory conditions

The collaboration will bring together non-identified health data research and insights expertise to improve patient outcomes.

IQVIA, a global provider of advanced analytics, technology solutions, and clinical research services to the life sciences industry, and BREATHE – the Health Data Research Hub for Respiratory Health are pleased to announce their new collaboration.

IQVIA joins BREATHE as a Supporting Partner, with clear strategic alignment between the organisations, to work together to improve health outcomes and quality of life for people living with respiratory conditions in the UK.

Building on BREATHE’s commitment to working with patients and the public, the collaboration will place the needs of people with respiratory disease at the front and centre of joint-working programmes that benefit from IQVIA’s health data technology, real world and genomic capabilities and care pathway analytics, synergistically working with BREATHE, to achieve the following:

  • Improve patient care pathways for those with long-term respiratory conditions across the UK, eliminating bottlenecks with quicker and more accurate diagnoses, timely referrals to specialist care and earlier access to innovative medicines
  • Deliver efficiencies within the NHS, identifying potential issues earlier to keep people in the community, reducing avoidable harm, hospital appointments and admissions
  • Help researchers accelerate the discovery of more effective treatments, personalised to the needs of individual patients, leading to better health outcomes and quality of life
  • Establish the UK as a world-leading location for health data-enabled research, thereby attracting more global pharma and biotech investment

Respiratory disease affects one in five people and is the third biggest cause of death in England, as well as being a major factor in winter pressures faced by the NHS. The annual economic burden of asthma and COPD alone on the NHS in the UK is estimated as £3 billion and £1.9 billion, respectively. In total, all lung conditions (including lung cancer) directly cost the NHS in the UK £11billion annually.

Respiratory conditions, like asthma and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), are often difficult to diagnose, leading to untreated symptoms, inappropriate treatments and avoidable morbidity and mortality due to disease progression. Research suggests that up to 2 million people in the UK have undiagnosed COPD. Improving the accuracy of diagnosis in primary care settings is a key goal for the new collaboration, allowing for better management of these conditions, and quicker referrals to specialist care. Equally, standards of care could be adjusted based on non-identified data collected and analysed.

With its wide-ranging network of partners, spanning academia, charities and industry, BREATHE is transforming the use of health data to improve respiratory outcomes in the UK. BREATHE works alongside partners and patients to identify priority questions that could be answered using non-identified health data, bringing together high quality respiratory data from multiple sources and providing streamlined access and support for its use in research and innovation, whilst ensuring individual patient privacy is protected at all stages.

Funded by UK Research and Innovation’s Industrial Strategy Challenge Fund, BREATHE is one of seven Health Data Research Hubs delivered by Health Data Research UK.

The collaboration will also enable IQVIA to harness its expertise in cancer data to make earlier lung cancer diagnoses and accelerate care. IQVIA is a founding member of DATA-CAN: the Health Data Research Hub for Cancer and is committed to developing the Cancer Data Network as part of the initiative.

In addition, there is potential for the collaboration to help create pathways for the treatment of Long COVID by identifying patients early and collecting data through continued follow-ups that could yield new treatments and models for rehabilitation.

Angela McFarlane, Senior Market Development Director, IQVIA: ” We are very excited to be working with BREATHE to catalyse the power of the UK’s uniquely rich health data to bring about step-change improvements in diagnosis and treatment of respiratory conditions and to attract more research that will accelerate the discovery of innovative medicines and the optimal use of existing NICE-approved treatments.”

Professor Aziz Sheikh, Director, BREATHE: ” Respiratory conditions affect a huge proportion of the UK population – 1 in 5 people live with a long-term respiratory disease. The application of non-identified health data can help us to deliver better outcomes for these patients, more efficiently, at a lower cost. We’re thrilled to welcome IQVIA as a supporting partner, with the prospect of informing earlier and more accurate diagnoses for patients across the UK.”

Antony Chuter, Lay Lead and Patient Representative, BREATHE: ” For many people, receiving a diagnosis gives them a better handle on what is going on with their health and allows them to make treatment decisions with their clinical team. With more information, we can deliver these significant moments earlier, with knock-on effects for people with breathing problems, their loved ones and their life. I feel proud that my non-identified health data could be used to build that bigger picture, and improve the experience for others.”

Caroline Cake, CEO, HDR UK: ” HDR UK is proud of BREATHE’s role in using non-identified data to improve the lives of people living with respiratory disease. This collaboration between BREATHE and IQVIA provides an important opportunity to join up capabilities and expertise to advance data-enabled discoveries in lung cancer, COVID-19, and other respiratory diseases. We welcome the commitment to working with patients and the public to realise these benefits.”