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Design for Patients


I am in charge of the marketing for an anticancer drug, for multiple myeloma. One of my recent projects involved turning our full attention to the product packaging.

The drug is taken in four-week cycles, with one capsule taken per week for the first three weeks, then one week off. So we wanted a package design that would ensure correct dosage by preventing the patient from taking the wrong amount, or from forgetting. We therefore included a section on the front where the user can write the scheduled dose dates. We also incorporated a tray-like receptacle into the package to help prevent the medicine from being accidentally dropped when taken out. Some patients have numbness in their fingertips, so a design like this makes it easier for them.

We conducted repeated research to understand, for example, how easy the package would be for patients to handle, how it would affect ease of carrying, and how well it would fit on pharmacy and hospital shelves. Every time we identified an item of potential improvement, we worked with departments throughout the company to make that happen, detail by detail, down to the last millimeter.

And the package received recognition, winning the WorldStar Award among other international package design prizes. At Takeda, our patients are at the center of everything we do, and I think this packaging expresses that core value.

Akiko Manome   

I joined the oncology marketing team after working as a Medical Representative. I’m always thinking about how we can best convey the message that our drugs embody to both medical practitioners and patients.