Parexel Adds APANDEMIC and Datavant to Lead Ongoing Advancement of #KeepingPatientsFirst Platform

Publish Date
June 16, 2020

New Partners join strategic collaboration, contributing additional technology and life sciences expertise to further accelerate patient access to new COVID-19 treatments

BOSTON and DURHAM, N.C. – June 16, 2020 – Parexel, a leading provider of solutions to accelerate the development and delivery of innovative new therapies to improve world health, from Clinical through Commercialization, today announced the addition of APANDEMIC and Datavant as new partners for the #KeepingPatientsFirst platform, an integrated research platform created to accelerate physician and patient access to treatments and outcomes for COVID-19.

“We are thrilled to have Datavant and APANDEMIC as partners in our real-world evidence (RWE) strategic platform to identify potential treatments for COVID-19,” said Peyton Howell, Chief Commercial & Strategy Officer. “Datavant’s advanced data tokenization technology can securely and efficiently organize patient data for clinical trials and is an excellent complement to expertise gleaned from the robust consortium of healthcare veterans leading APANDEMIC. Both organizations are tremendous value-adds to our growing platform.”

APANDEMIC, an initiative driven by a coalition of physicians, drug developers, data scientists and engineers with the mission of providing immediate access to information on investigational therapies for the treatment of COVID-19, and Datavant, the leader in helping healthcare organizations connect data, will contribute to the ongoing advancement of the #KeepingPatientsFirst platform, aimed at providing patients and physicians much-needed real-time information to advance understanding of and potential treatments for COVID-19.

“As leaders in healthcare and technology, we have a responsibility to patients and healthcare workers to offer our expertise and services to help solve the COVID-19 pandemic. #KeepingPatientsFirst is a unique opportunity in that this platform is focused on providing real-time information to help patients today and in the future,” said Thomas Bock, MD, MBA and co-founder of APANDEMIC. Fellow APANDEMIC co-founder Ulo Palm, MD, PhD added, “What we are experiencing with the COVID-19 pandemic is absolutely unprecedented. With APANDEMIC and #KeepingPatientsFirst, we have brought together a collective of data scientists who are not afraid to leverage available technology to push the boundaries of the traditional clinical research model to advance drug development into the future.”

Ulo Palm and Peyton Howell will discuss #KeepingPatientsFirst today as part of the Parexel and Microsoft Innovation Theater at the Drug Information Association (DIA) 2020 Annual Meeting. The #KeepingPatientsFirst platform is powered by Microsoft cloud technology that allows for the highly secure collection of information from healthcare organizations, that doctors and researchers can then analyze to uncover insights into the evolution of the illness and patient outcomes. Researchers and scientists will also be able to use de-identified information from the effort to help them characterize the real-world patient disease journey — from awareness to testing, to diagnosis, to disease resolution.

Travis May, Chief Executive Officer, Datavant added, “#KeepingPatientsFirst is a great example of leading industry organizations collaborating to leverage the latest expertise and technology to advance one of the most important issues in the world today — finding a treatment for COVID-19. Building on our long-term partnership with Parexel, we look forward to contributing our privacy-protecting data linking technology to help the healthcare industry connect real-world data about COVID-19 that can be used to better and understand and mitigate this terrible disease.”

About #KeepingPatientsFirst

#KeepingPatientsFirst is a platform focused on aggregating, analyzing and predicting real-world COVID-19-related disease progression and outcomes using state-of-the-art machine learning, artificial intelligence and analytics. The study is now available to provide patients and healthcare providers a leading source for rapid access to pooled real-time analyses on multiple COVID-19 therapies with a goal to facilitate informed, individualized treatment decisions and accelerating the identification of promising therapies. This epidemiological approach will also help to characterize and define an unprecedented worldwide event, including documenting the real-world patient journey from awareness to diagnosis to disease outcomes, speeding the evaluation of potential COVID-19 therapies. For more information visit: keepingpatientsfirst.


We are a coalition of patient-focused experts and leaders across healthcare including physicians, medical researchers, drug developers, data scientists, bioethicists, engineers and corporate executives. We are concerned that the traditional approach of development, approval and access to new COVID-19 therapies achieves available therapies too late: Too late to protect the thousands of lives at risk now, and too late to reopen the economy with the speed that people need. We joined forces to design a faster solution and bring together the right stakeholders who implement this solution. We are solely committed to the patient. We act and speak as private concerned citizens and not on behalf of any organization we are members of. Learn more about APANDEMIC at

About Datavant

Datavant’s mission is to connect the world’s health data to improve patient outcomes. Datavant works with data owners and users to ensure that data can be connected to power next-generation analytics and applications while protecting patient privacy. Datavant is headquartered in San Francisco. Learn more about Datavant at

About Parexel

Parexel is focused on supporting the development of innovative new therapies to improve patient health. During the COVID-19 crisis, we continue to be committed to our customers’ business while putting the safety of patients, client partners and our employees at the heart of everything we do. To learn more about our efforts related to COVID-19, as well as the experts, innovations and processes we have in place to navigate the rapidly changing landscape, visit our website and follow us on LinkedIn, Twitter and Instagram.

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