LOS ANGELES, July 20, 2016 /PRNewswire/ -- Wondros, a Los Angeles-based creative communications and design agency founded by Jesse Dylan, is working with the National Institutes of Health (NIH) to design and implement the communications strategy for the ambitious Precision Medicine Initiative (PMI) Cohort Program.
President Obama first announced his intention to launch PMI in his 2015 State of the Union address. The intention behind the PMI is "to bring us closer to curing diseases like cancer and diabetes, and to give all of us access to the personalized information we need to keep ourselves and our families healthier."1
Precision medicine is an approach to disease treatment and prevention that seeks to maximize effectiveness by taking into account individual variability in genes, environment, and lifestyle. It seeks to redefine our understanding of disease onset and progression, treatment response, and health outcomes through the more precise measurement of molecular, environmental, and behavioral factors that contribute to health and disease. The hope is that such understanding will lead to more accurate diagnoses, more rational disease prevention strategies, better treatment selection, and the development of new therapies. While striving to advance medical science, the PMI Cohort Program is also about changing the culture of medical practice and medical research by engaging individuals as active partners – not just as patients or research subjects. The NIH believes the combination of a highly engaged population and rich biological, health, behavioral, and environmental data will usher in a new and more effective era of American healthcare.
To achieve this goal, the NIH seeks to develop a membership pool of one million or more Americans who will serve as a volunteer base for the PMI Cohort Program, sharing health data and biospecimens that will be accessible to researchers across the nation. This will be the first time in history such a massive pool of health data will be available to help advance medical research.
Wondros, known for its strong portfolio of innovative communications and design work in medicine, biomedical research, and healthcare, is charged with developing the branding, messaging, and communications assets and strategies for engaging and ultimately recruiting this volunteer base.
"When President Obama announced the PMI Cohort Program, I knew this would be a game-changer for medicine," says Jesse Dylan, Wondros founder and creative director. "It's an honor to be charged with telling the story of PMI and helping to get Americans involved."
As part of a collaborative effort, Wondros is working closely with other academic institutions, private sector, and Federal agencies to plan, pilot, and implement communications strategies that appeal to different populations, ensuring that PMI has a broad volunteer base that is representative of the ethnic and racial diversity and demographic makeup of the United States. Wondros is also working on messaging and engagement strategies for the PMI Cohort Program's direct volunteer website, which is the online home for the PMI Cohort Program.
"This is a unique opportunity to involve Americans from all walks of life in a groundbreaking initiative," says Patrick McGovern, senior director of global strategy for Wondros. "It's also about communicating a new, more engaged vision of what it means to be a participant in research. In PMI, patients are viewed as partners in making discoveries, working together with doctors and researchers to move medical science forward in a big way."
Wondros is playing a key role in defining the PMI Cohort Program's strategic communications by applying the principles of human-centered design through a process known as Ecology Modeling, an approach based on ethnographic investigations. This approach helps clarify and define the motivations, goals, and behaviors of different stakeholders connected to the initiative, including patients, healthy volunteers, researchers, and doctors, to name a few. The resulting Ecology Model forms the basis for an informed and human-centered design process, one that reflects the authentic aims and cultures of people who will be engaged with PMI in the future.
Based on this foundation, Wondros will craft an original research engagement campaign that is national in scope and employs the principles of human-centered design and storytelling to communicate the PMI Cohort Program's mission and objectives.
Jordan Wiggins – [email protected] T 323.951.0010
Wondros is a collective of storytellers, strategists, and designers in the service of ideas that change culture. As a strategic consultancy and media production company, it translates the complex ideas of some of the world's most innovative individuals and organizations into clear and engaging narratives. Wondros creates robust campaigns, uniting multiple deliverables under overarching strategy towards one vision. Its clients include Open Society Foundations, The Clinton Global Initiative, TED, The Oprah Winfrey Network, Sundance, AMEX, IBM, MD Anderson, Taschen, Harvard Catalyst, Vanity Fair, Council on Foreign Relations, MIT Media Lab, among others.
1 Precision Medicine Initiative Cohort Program—Building a Research Foundation for 21st Century Medicine: Precision Medicine Initiative (PMI) Working Group Report to the Advisory Committee to the Director, NIH, September, 2015.