case study

Building Community
in a Crisis

Uniting global patient advocates to navigate COVID-19 and mitigate the pandemic’s impact.

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Patient advocates around the globe faced significant challenges due to COVID-19 as congresses were cancelled, fundraising turned virtual, and resources stretched thin. Bristol Myers Squibb sought to convene advocates across therapeutic areas to discuss unmet needs and demonstrate its long-term commitment to the community.

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Patient advocacy groups were seeking expertise, guidance and data from the pharmaceutical industry to help navigate the pandemic and best fulfill their missions. Groups from across therapeutic areas rarely have opportunities to work together and share learnings.

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Provided strategic counsel and planning, internal and external communications and creative support for Bristol Myers Squibb as the company partnered with GRYT Health (leveraging their proprietary platform and advocacy relationships) to build the Covid Advocacy Exchange (CAE). Communicated the launch of the free, 24/7 virtual platform to unite patients, patient advocacy groups, policymakers, HCPs and the industry to help each navigate the new, ever-evolving environment and mitigate the pandemic’s impact on global public health.

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Raised awareness of and participation in this first-of-its-kind community. Drove attendance to monthly live, interactive discussion sessions where patient voices are heard, and engagement with the CAE’s virtual exhibit hall so that participating organizations can share resources and learn from one another.


  • 30,000+ people from 91 countries have visited the platform
  • 5,600+ registrants (28% from outside the US)
  • 300+ patient advocacy organizations have participated and 50+ created virtual booths within the GRYT Health platform, visited 5,800+ TIMES
  • 19+ live interactive panel discussions received ~170 attendees per session (25% returning)
  • 3,000+ people interacted live with 85 thought leaders from advocacy, healthcare, and industry
  • 1,200+ attendees watched live keynote on building resilience
  • Media coverage in 13+ outlets, including 7 interviews with CAE spokespeople, reaching 6M+ monthly readers, plus 8M+ social media impressions
  • Finalist: 2020 PRWeek Purpose Awards: Best Proof of Authenticity; 2021 SABRE Awards North America: Community Relations
  • Honorable Mention: 2021 PR Daily Digital Marketing and Social Media Awards: Community Relations