A gap is defined by what is around it, a bit like a donut hole.  A gap analysis is somewhat straightforward, albeit complex process that helps to identify the current holes in existing frameworks, processes and practices.  A core aspect of PARADIGM’s strategic plan is to build upon the existing patient engagement activities and to bridge existing gaps.  

To date, significant efforts have been focused on creating a database of existing frameworks, processes and practices, while designing the conceptual tool that will support a detailed assessment of these activities to identify existing gaps, both known and unknown, in the patient engagement ecosystem. 

It is crucially important to assess and quantify known and unknown gaps since there is a fundamental distinction:  

  • Known gaps are anecdotal or often reported upon by stakeholders, but rarely documented
  • Unknown gaps are identified only when a detailed analysis of a large dataset is undertaken; they are quantitative and also include gaps that are qualitative – relating to preferences, needs and outcomes that are less readily tangible

In light of the significant headway gained by PFMD and EUPATI, immediate efforts have focused on exploring these platforms as an initial point of learning.  This has been quickly followed by assessing the work of other key initiatives, for example, CTTI, TransCelerate, and PCORI. The knowledge across the PARADIGM work groups has also been harnessed. This comprehensive process will allow us to potentially tap into a large number of useful case studies from a number of different sources.  

Co-creation through collaboration, both inside and outside of the consortium, is at the heart of how we operate.  An internal workshop last October provided the opportunity to coordinate activities and perspectives on the stakeholder survey results.  Insights were also gained on the data collection tool underpinning the gap analysis, along with some of the generally known gaps across the patient engagement ecosystem.  2018 ended well, with the accumulation of a large diverse dataset that forms the substrate for in-depth interrogation during 2019.

In this new year, we are off and running with the intent to further collect additional case studies, conduct webinars to co-create and validate the final gap analysis tool, and produce reports to share findings.  We are well-positioned to bridge any gaps, and this will allow for the growth of knowledge, skills and behaviours to enhance quality within the patient engagement ecosystem.