NEW YORK: In the same week that GCI Group won a dollars 4.5 million
Health Care Financing Administration (HCFA) contract, it also formed an
affiliation with clinical research firm PharmaTech Solutions.
The HCFA deal makes GCI its primary contractor for 2001. "We're going to
help raise awareness of Medicare programs and its resources for
seniors," explained Ilyssa Levins, chairwoman of GCI's global healthcare
GCI will provide strategic and tactical support for HCFA's ten regional
offices and create community-based media and outreach campaigns to
educate the more than 74 million Americans who use MediCare.
The HCFA account will be co-managed by New York VP Lynda Woodworth and
Lynn Duran, SVP of Atlanta. They will supervise a team of 30 GCI
employees, who will execute the campaign in Atlanta, Chicago, Dallas,
San Francisco, Seattle and Boulder, CO. Project management will be
headquartered out of the Atlanta office.
GCI competed with Ogilvy, Ketchum, the Academy for Educational
Development and Aspen Systems for the HCFA contract.
Moving into the lucrative clinical trial recruitment and retention
arena, GCI also has formed a partnership with PharmaTech Technology.
The agency's alliance with the clinically focused computer and telecoms
firm will provide a one-stop shop for research, medical and drug
companies needing help in recruiting patients for trials. Services will
include tailoring messages to target audiences and recommending
activities to educate potential referring physicians.
Staff of the new alliance will include physicians, lawyers, journalists,
social workers and psychologists.
GCI's move takes advantage of the rapid increase in the number of drugs
in development. Since 1993, that number has jumped from 4,100 to at
least 9,000. However, GCI states that 78% of all trials are delayed by
the difficulty in recruiting patients.