Epocrates DocAlert Messaging: Trusted Channel for Physicians and Pharma

Pioneer in Mobile Physician Communication Enhances Messaging System

San Mateo, Calif., April 29, 2010

Epocrates, Inc., the leading developer of mobile point-of-care software, provides a trusted channel for partners to connect with its network of 275,000 U.S. physician subscribers. Established in 2000 as the first mobile vehicle for physician communication, Epocrates' DocAlert® messaging service has delivered millions of important and timely medical news briefs to subscribers' mobile devices on behalf of pharmaceutical, medical device, government and managed care organizations. Today, the company announced enhancements and new functionality to the system that will provide more user engagement and capabilities for partners.

Pharmaceutical and Government Organizations Turn to Epocrates

As developers of the industry's most popular and widely-used mobile medical application, Epocrates has created a direct line of communication as a value-add for all stakeholders. Top pharmaceutical companies work with the company to provide more than 40 percent of the nation's physicians with credible medical news in a digestible format. Epocrates delivered messages for 175 pharmaceutical brands in 2009 on topics such as new drug indications, approvals and clinical findings. Messages are often targeted by specialty, demographic or other criteria to increase relevance to recipients and deliver measurable results for the sponsoring organization.

"At one of my prior companies, the marketing team was among the first to use mobile marketing and conduct a DocAlert campaign. Even then, we appreciated the ability to tailor the message and audience, and produce great results," said Rose Crane, chief executive officer of Epocrates. "Having been in the pharmaceutical industry, I am especially excited about these advancements that will make the content richer and more engaging to our physician network, which in turn increases the ROI to our partners."

Government agencies, including the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), work with Epocrates to disseminate important news to physicians that impacts patient care. The FDA MedWatch was a primary source for non-sponsored messages in 2009, and the CDC approached Epocrates to quickly disseminate H1N1 news throughout the season.

Physicians Trust Epocrates to Stay Informed

DocAlert messages were created to help physicians to stay on top of the latest medical developments by conveniently delivering briefs to their mobile device. After reading about topics such as medication safety, industry guidelines and practice management tips, physicians can request more information by email in a long-form document or web resource. Epocrates' in-house team of medical editors ensures the alerts are always clinically relevant, and fields content from credible health publishers and news providers, such as the BMJ Group (publishers of the British Medical Journal) and JournalWatch.

In 2010, clinicians will experience the following enhancements to the messaging system:

  • Immediate linking from alerts to other features such as Contact Manufacturer, EssentialPoints® mobile detailing activities, as well as links to referenced journal abstracts.
  • Engaging visuals such as clinical images, graphs and charts provide more context to the bite-sized alerts via a follow-up email now viewable on device.
  • Improved readability, including new formatting and a full screen view for smartphone devices.

"It is impossible to consume all the medical information out there. I enjoy reading Epocrates' alerts because I know they'll have something applicable to my practice and patient care," said cardiologist Dr. Frank Kempf.

Epocrates' DocAlert messages are a free service available to the more than 900,000 healthcare professionals worldwide who actively use the company's products on mobile devices, such as iPhone®, BlackBerry® and Palm®. The new features are initially available for iPhone devices.

Media Contact

Holly Spring
athenahealth, Inc. (Media)

Dana Quattrochi
athenahealth, Inc. (Investors)

April Marks
Epocrates, Inc. (Media)