By David Woods (

Dr. Patti Peeples: what a perfect name for the subject of HOC people! She tells me that the origin of the name is from Peebles, in Scotland.

Patti founded a website,, 16 years ago; and that made her one of the early adopters of the Internet. Today, she says, it’s the number one website for health economists globally… with some 10,000 visitors a month.

The website is an umbrella for her consulting services. She calls it a mega website for health outcomes and health economics resources, and works with several companies in the pharmaceutical industry, including Pfizer, Genentech, J& J and GSK, as well as with related consulting companies. The site also provides employment information.

Patti came to her present position following a stint as director of medical affairs and outcomes research for Alza, now a J&J company, where she ran the Phase IV clinical trials. Before earning a PhD in pharmacy administration with an emphasis on health economics at the University of the Sciences in Philadelphia she was a product manager at Sandoz (now Novartis) with particular responsibilities for that company’s heart, kidney, and liver transplant immunisation drug, Sandimmune.

Today, she says that this particular combination of experience and skills places her ideally to bridge the gap between clinical trials and marketing. Health economics affects so many different stakeholders, she believes, so the market has to tailor itself to each of them… recipients may be looking for different information and benefits depending on whether they are managed care organisations, hospitals, employers, or clinicians.

Of HOC, she says:”I like its conciseness, its breadth of issues and its targeted focus.”

And when she’s not running her health economics website and consultancy, Patti plays the guitar, and tries to cure what she calls ‘nature deficit disorder’ by providing children, including her twin eight-year-old boys, with a solid grounding in nature and environmental issues. In fact, she and her husband Steve Gustafson recently took an RV trip across the United States for 2 1/2 months. Part of the training she offers has to do with survival skills – surely an excellent capability for those in today’s healthcare jungle. As she puts it: “My dream is to be stranded on an island for a year, with only a pen-knife.”