The 2021 Outcomes Creativity Index (OCI)

2021 marks the third edition of the Outcomes Creativity Index (OCI), a ranking of pharmaceutical companies and prescription brands according to creativity and innovation. The OCI is an aggregate score-based creative achievement encompassing results from these leading U.S. and international healthcare award shows: The Outcomes LLC/Med Ad News Manny Awards; Cannes Lions; Clio Health; The Creative Floor Awards; The MM+M Awards; and The One Show. Each year in the Med Ad News October magazine, the leading pharma companies and prescription brands are presented from tabulating the results of the OCI scoring system.

The OCI is based on aggregate points for the measurement period by prescription brand and by company based on results from the aforementioned six healthcare communications award shows. The time frame for the 2021 OCI rankings ranges from the October 2020 MM+M Awards through the July 2021 Creative Floor Healthcare Awards.

The top scorer among pharma companies in the 2021 OCI is Insmed, which markets ARIKAYCE as the first and only FDA-approved treatment for MAC lung disease as part of a multidrug treatment plan in adults who continue to test positive after at least six months of a multidrug regimen alone. Roche/Genentech came in second place and Novartis ranked third among all companies per OCI tabulations.

Among prescription brands, the leading scorers for the 2021 OCI are Entresto, Cyramza, and ARIKAYCE. Marketed by Novartis, Entresto is the first and only treatment approved for most heart failure patients. Cyramza, marketed by Eli Lilly, is used to treat certain types of cancer.


Top Companies

1. Insmed

2. Roche/Genentech

3. Novartis

4. GlaxoSmithKline

5. AstraZeneca 

6. Teva Pharmaceutical Industries

7. Johnson & Johnson/Janssen 

7. Greenwich Biosciences 

9. Eli Lilly

10. Pfizer 


– Repeating ranks represent a tied score

– Nonbranded campaign work is included in the company scoring


Top Prescription Brands

1. Entresto 


2. Cyramza 

(Eli Lilly)



4. Alkindi Sprinkle 

(Eton Pharmaceuticals)

5. Epidiolex 

(Greenwich Biosciences) 

6. Luxturna 


6. Alprolix 

(Sanofi Genzyme) 

6. Rybelsus 

(Novo Nordisk)

9. Injectafer 

(Daiichi Sankyo)

9. Absorica 

(Sun Pharmaceutical Industries)

9. Chantix 


9. Annovera 



– Repeat ranks represent a tied score

– Nonbranded campaign work is not included in the brand scoring


Med Ad News talked to management from Insmed and Novartis about the industry’s recognition of the campaign work. 

Med Ad News: What does it mean for your company to be recognized as one of the most innovative and creative marketers in the industry?

Drayton Wise

Drayton Wise, SVP, Head of US & General Manager, ARIKAYCE at Insmed: At Insmed, we take our role as a leader in the rare disease space very seriously; we and our agency partners feel a great responsibility to serve patients suffering from nontuberculous mycobacterial (NTM) lung disease as well as the HCPs who treat them. We craft marketing materials to break through the clutter and noise of everyday life, so pushing creative boundaries comes naturally to us. We are honored to be recognized for being on the leading edge of creativity as we pursue our patient-centered mission.

Ugur Kucukcetin

Ugur Kucukcetin, Executive Director Customer Experience Entresto Marketing at Novartis: At Novartis, our mission is to reimagine medicine to improve and extend people’s lives. We try to achieve this by developing innovative medicines and delivering them to those who may benefit. This requires driving awareness and education about our medicines so that they reach appropriate patients. Our approach to marketing is centered around the needs of our patients and HCPs – reaching them where they are with the information that is important to them. This recognition from Med Ad News is confirmation that we’re on the right track. 

Med Ad News: What challenges were faced in creating the campaign work, and how did creativity help overcome those challenges?

Ruth Dovdavany

Ruth Dovdavany, Executive Director, ARIKAYCE Brand Leader at Insmed: People living with NTM lung disease often suffer for years without ever knowing what’s wrong with them. NTM lung disease has many of the same symptoms as other pulmonary comorbidities, like COPD, bronchiectasis, and asthma, so HCPs can often misdiagnose, or just overlook, NTM lung disease. It’s critically important for HCPs – and in particular, pulmonologists and infectious diseases specialists – to know and look for the signs and symptoms of NTM lung disease so that patients can achieve an earlier and accurate diagnosis. This was the primary challenge to address. We knew we had to break through, and a creative solution was how we’d do it: tell the stories of real patients with emotion, storytelling, craft, humor, and song. Creativity was how we’d get HCPs to take on NTM and help free their patients from this challenging disease. 

Change of Heart, an unconventional MOA film, explains Entresto science through music.

Ugur Kucukcetin: Aligned with our customer-centric vision at Novartis, we continuously look for patient insights and recognized that patients needed a simpler way to understand how Entresto works. However, the science of Entresto is not easily translated into the impact it could have for patients. And we hear from heart failure patients often that they are overwhelmed and don’t have the time & patience to sit through a science lesson. We needed to find a way to break through this barrier. And we found it in music. According to neurologists, music is a great adult learning tool because it targets the hippocampus – the part of the brain where memories are consolidated.

Med Ad News: What were the objectives and messages of the campaign work? 

Ugur Kucukcetin: Our goal was to help patients have clarity on their heart failure and how they can manage it in partnership with their HCP. At the same time, we wanted to share how Entresto might be able to help eligible patients. To do this effectively, we simplified the science and matched it to music. Just like many of us learned the alphabet by singing along to “The ABC Song”, we thought we could teach people about heart failure with a song called “Change of Heart”. We recorded the first-ever song written about heart failure and brought it to life in a charming, animated video.

“An Animated Anthology of an Odious Ailment” – three short films that brought to life the true stories of patients unknowingly battling NTM lung disease.

Ruth Dovdavany: We needed to elevate the awareness of NTM lung disease among HCPs so they could take the three steps to address it: think NTM, test for NTM, and treat NTM. A powerful first step in doing so was creating “An Animated Anthology of an Odious Ailment” – three short films that brought to life the true stories of patients unknowingly battling NTM lung disease. We knew that once HCPs were looking for NTM, and then testing for it and treating it, we could alleviate the suffering of patients. 

Med Ad News: How were creativity and innovation used to connect with the target audience?

Ugur Kucukcetin: When we had an idea for a video that brought to life how Entresto works, music was the farthest thing from our minds. However, by being open to unconventional approaches, and patient insights, we found a way to connect with heart failure patients that went far deeper than any scientific video could. We went beyond the rational to connect with people on an instinctive, emotional level. And it worked. When the Entresto “Change of Heart” video runs on YouTube or Facebook, we get an overwhelmingly positive response. 

Ruth Dovdavany: To help illuminate the suffering of patients with NTM lung disease, we paired real NTM patients with artists from around the world to create original animations that visually communicate what patients often struggled to put into words – the long, difficult journey to diagnosis. These animations grab the attention of HCPs and raise their index of suspicion to identify, diagnose, and treat NTM before their patients pay the price. 

“Trapped” is the reimagining of Beth’s story. Prior to being diagnosed, Beth’s ongoing NTM symptoms made her feel trapped in an endless cycle of despair that took a toll on both her personal and professional life. Beth felt as if she couldn’t escape or break free from her constant symptoms of cough, fatigue, and shortness of breath. The film was brought to life using stop motion animation with an original song and sound effects to accompany the cyclical storyline.

“Infected” was inspired by Debbie’s misdiagnosis journey. Though she didn’t know at the time, NTM was causing Debbie’s chronic symptoms, like her persistent cough. It made her feel isolated and alone, driving away her family and friends because they thought she was contagious. The film was brought to life as a musical using traditional cel animation. An original song and lyrics help to tell Debbie’s story, taking the viewer through the downward spiral of her loneliness.

Reimagined from her long and frustrating misdiagnosis journey, “Unbreakable” tells the story of Barbara, characterized as a bunny. Barbara’s tale illustrates how she was referred from doctor to doctor, therapy to therapy, and misdiagnosis to misdiagnosis with no one having the right expertise to help. The trajectory of the film showcases Barbara’s worsening condition and her loss of hope, until she finally finds the answer she’s been searching for. The film was brought to life in full-color CGI with an original score to accompany the emotive storyline.



Manny Awards

For more than 30 years, the Manny Awards have paid tribute to the creative work of agencies serving the healthcare market, their people, and their contributions to the industry. Each year at this black-tie gala, Med Ad News and agency professionals come together to acknowledge those making significant contributions to, and celebrate creative excellence in, healthcare communications. On this special evening, hundreds of peers join Med Ad News to honor winners in an extensive range of award categories. The accolades include three Agency of the Year categories, Industry Person of the Year, Agency on the Rise, Most Creative Agency, and the Heart Award for philanthropic/social causes. Due to the global COVID-19 pandemic, the 2021 event was held virtually on April 22 and can be viewed for free at 

Cannes Lions: Pharma and Health & Wellness

Cannes Lions: The International Festival of Creativity has been championing creative excellence since 1954 with the goal of providing a global destination and the definitive benchmark for creativity that drives progress. The Health Track consists of the Pharma Lions and Health & Wellness Lions. Lions Health focuses on the creation, conception and execution of awe-inspiring life-changing creativity that has a verifiable impact on healthcare outcomes. The Health & Wellness and Pharma Lions celebrate creativity in branded communications in this highly innovative but fiercely regulated sector with the unique power to truly change lives. The 2020/2021 event winners were announced during June 2021.

Clio Health

Built on Clio’s enduring reputation for recognizing the most creative and culturally relevant marketing and communications, Clio Health was founded in 2009 to celebrate the work behind wellness. The program is a barometer for excellence in a highly specialized field, recognizing creativity that not only meets the advanced needs of consumers, but addresses the sophisticated challenges, demands and opportunities of a fast-evolving, rapidly expanding global marketplace and industry. The 2021 winners were announced on June 29.

Creative Floor Healthcare Awards

The Creative Floor Awards – billed as “The Toughest Healthcare Award Show on Earth” – continues to be the only health and wellness award show in the world to donate a percentage of profits to help more diversity and help underprivileged talent break into the healthcare communications industry. Winners of the awards decide how the money is spent. The winners for the combined 2020/2021 event were announced on July 29, 2021.

MM+M Awards

The MM+M Awards celebrate excellence in all facets of healthcare marketing and communications within the life sciences industry. The MM+M Awards are the result of deep analysis and expertise amongst esteemed panels of leaders and thinkers representing a wide variety of disciplines and backgrounds within healthcare marketing communities. The winners of the 17th annual MM+M Awards show were announced virtually on Oct. 8, 2020.

One Show

The One Show is one of the world’s most prestigious awards shows in advertising, design and digital marketing that celebrates excellence in creativity of ideas and quality of execution. Established in 1973 and produced by non-profit organization The One Club for Creativity, The One Show is recognized for the high level of integrity in the event’s judging procedures and processes. Due to the global COVID-19 pandemic, the 2021 winners were presented online during June.