New Omnicom Network Helps Healthcare Clients Play Larger Role With Patient

Omnicom Group has formed a network of healthcare specialists under the name STAR Healthcare to provide clients with a more direct and holistic connection to chronically ill patients.

The idea is to help healthcare and pharmaceutical brands step into the role once played by medical professionals. At a time when patients are compelled to take a more active role in their treatment, STAR believes there is a place for corporate healthcare companies to help educate and partner with them.

Maryann Kuzel, formerly VP of account management and new business development at the independent Patient Marketing Group, has been selected as president and CEO of the network. Kuzel previously worked at Novartis, Procter & Gamble and Interpublic Group’s McCann Worldgroup.

“We’ve come together with one mission, which is to drive results for healthcare clients by focusing on the patient’s journey,” said Kuzel.

The specialists comprising STAR Healthcare all hail from agencies within the STAR Marketing network, a group of marketing services shops with a focus on technology in communications. Member groups include Javelin Direct, OMG Digital, Critical Mass, ECI and OMG Direct. The specialists will be pulled to work on STAR Healthcare clients on an as-needed basis.

The network launches with two inaugural clients, Roche Diagnostics and Spear Pharmaceuticals, along with several identified companies.

The network format will prevent healthcare clients from having to hire multiple agencies in an effort to cover various touchpoints with chronically ill patients, said Kuzel.

“Clients can be working with as many as 14 different agencies in order to deliver the different kinds of programs” all working on different media channels, she said. “But it’s just one patient and one experience, and what he learns at the beginning of the process indicates how he thinks and feels at the end of it.”

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