Interview with Philip Parks of Exact Sciences Corporation

Dr. Philip Parks joined Exact Sciences in 2017 as the Head of Medical Affairs and member of the leadership team. Dr. Parks also has more than 17 years of clinical, research and development, corporate medicine, and managed care experience. He maintains academic appointments at Harvard Medical School and the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health. Read his full bio.

Interview with Philip Parks of Exact Sciences Corporation

Q: What need is Exact Sciences Corporation addressing?

A: Exact Sciences’ mission is to improve patient outcomes through the early detection of cancer. We are especially focused on developing highly accurate, minimally invasive screening tests and technologies.

Q: What are the products and/or services Exact Sciences Corporation offers/develops to address this need? What makes Exact Sciences unique?

A: Exact Sciences developed Cologuard, a multi-target stool DNA test which is a non-invasive, at home colorectal cancer screening option for adults aged 50 years and older at average risk for colorectal cancer. The test incorporates proprietary scientific technologies enabling the detection of very small amounts of abnormal DNA and blood in stool samples to screen for cancer. A unique component of Cologuard is its built-in patient compliance program provided at no additional cost to patients, healthcare providers, health systems, or insurance companies. The patient compliance program is available 24/7 to answer any questions patients may have as they screen for colorectal cancer using Cologuard. Exact Sciences, in collaboration with Mayo Clinic, is also developing a blood-based detection technology to address liver cancer. Liver cancer is currently the fastest growing cause of cancer-related deaths worldwide.

Q: What is your role at Exact Sciences Corporation and what excites you about your work?

A: I joined Exact Sciences in February of 2017 to lead the Medical Affairs team and work with the leadership team to build a world-class Medical Affairs capability and support Cologuard. I am deeply excited about the opportunity for Exact Sciences to provide medical diagnostic technologies to address unmet needs for individual patients and populations. I am also excited about the fantastic and talented team that I collaborate with daily.

Q: When thinking about Exact Sciences Corporation and the domain Exact Sciences Corporation is working in, what are some of the recent breakthroughs that are propelling the field forward and how will they impact healthcare?

A: In the last 5 years, there have been dramatic increases in the utilization of electronic health records and the patient level data that are being leveraged to enable healthcare delivery models and preventive health initiatives within populations. Exact Sciences is working with many stakeholders including healthcare providers, health systems, accountable care organizations, and health insurers to improve the early detection of cancer. The ability to actively manage and intervene to improve the health of populations is a tremendous opportunity. Scientific breakthroughs through cancer biomarker discovery uniquely position Exact Sciences to tackle the early detection of cancer and bring game-changing technologies to patients and healthcare providers.

Q: What are the short-term challenges that Exact Sciences Corporation and its peers are facing?

A: Short-term and long-term opportunities include a universal challenge in healthcare innovation – how can Exact Sciences collaborate with stakeholders in the healthcare landscape to accelerate the rate of change of how healthcare and preventive care are delivered? This is a challenge we face, along with the challenge of how medicine is practiced at both point of care and the population level.

Q: Is there anything else you would like to share with the PMWC audience?

A: I am grateful for the opportunity to participate in this preeminent event during such an exciting era in healthcare innovation.