within inVentiv Health Communications, suggests new ways to promote sustained change by leveraging the contributing influences of
the family, the healthcare system,
and society. This extensive study,
conducted in two phases over
two years, took us into 30 patient
homes to observe behaviors as
they unfolded over time and social
patterns of influence that could be
harnessed for positive change.
Our observations “in the wild”
allowed us to gather data on actual
patient lives, which, when com-
bined with our expertise in be-
havioral science, provided insights
that cannot be gathered through
any survey, interview, or literature
Over the course of our research,
we witnessed job changes, unexpected medical bills, family members moving in and out of a household, and even one patient dying.
In the midst of near constant
change, families dealt with medical
issues from diabetes and mental
illness to infertility and cancer.
Our research brought into focus
how and why programs that are
“one-size-fits-all” and designed for
an “ideal” social context are bound
to have limited impact.
Participants in our research represented a wide range of ages,
socio-economic backgrounds, and
illnesses. They included families
with small children and teen-agers,
empty nesters, families deeply engaged in caring for elderly parents,