Leadership & Management

Pharma and MedTech companies to focus on ethics through Vision 2025

Health Industry Hub | October 19, 2020 |
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Leadership & Management: The dual health and economic crisis resulting from COVID-19 brings into sharp focus the importance of ethical business conduct in the Asia-Pacific region.

Small and medium enterprises (SMEs) in the medical device and biopharmaceutical sectors have been significantly impacted, during a time when they are being called upon for major action.

To support these enterprises and stakeholders in the wider health system, the Business Ethics for Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) SMEs Initiative launched last week with a bold, new vision for the next five years.

The International Federation of Pharmaceutical Manufacturers & Associations (IFPMA) joined hundreds of diverse stakeholders from more than 30 economies spanning the Asia-Pacific and beyond in a shared commitment to solidify and grow the world’s largest public-private, multi-sectoral partnership in the advancement of business ethics in the medical device and biopharmaceutical sectors, through Vision 2025

Australia formed the Australian Ethical Health Alliance (AEHA) which supports and engages with nearly every health system stakeholder in Australia – bringing more than seventy partners to the same table to promote shared ethical principles.

This Vision 2025 roadmap builds on a decade of work in the APEC region, resulting in the adoption of codes of ethics for industry bodies representing nearly 20,000 enterprises of every size across the APEC region, including in 10 economies where they previously did not exist.  

IFPMA members are firmly behind this roadmap, launched at the 2020 APEC Business Ethics for SMEs Virtual Forum.  

“APEC is at the forefront of driving the most essential value in our healthcare systems today, and that’s integrity,” said David Ricks, President of the IFPMA and Chairman and CEO of Eli Lilly and Company. “We make medicines that improve people’s health or sustain their life. Trust is the bedrock of the modern pharmaceutical industry. Integrity and trust in our enterprise come first in everything that we do”, he added.  

“Integrity is the cornerstone principle for any organization that values trust. And trust is the lifeblood of healthcare and innovation. In this context we realize our essential integrity is to pioneering new treatments that save countless lives. Integrity is our ultimate tool to win the battle against COVID-19,” said Jean-Christophe Tellier, Chief Executive Officer and Chairman of the Executive Committee at UCB, incoming President of IFPMA.

“We live in a time where scientific innovation is improving human health. But you also need to have the right values, ethics, and integrity in place to make the right decisions. We know that companies with a strong purpose are more competitive and attractive. Strong values lead to success and sustainability for companies, and for society,” said Christophe Weber, President and CEO, Takeda Pharmaceuticals.  

“Vision 2025 is an ambitious roadmap set to guide future ethical collaboration across health systems. The positive uptake of consensus frameworks and ethics codes will better position the APEC region to combat the pandemic,” said Rady Johnson, chair of the IFPMA Ethics and Business Integrity Committee and Chief Compliance, Quality and Risk Officer of Pfizer.  

In addition to pushing for higher standards of ethical business conduct, Vision 2025 breaks new ground in efforts to measure the positive return on ethics on the bottom line. Through an impact assessment that looks at the economic, business, health and innovation benefits of ethical business practices aligned with APEC Principles, Vision 2025 will provide evidence on the diverse advantages of embracing business integrity for companies,  taking the conversation beyond the costs of corruption. The impact assessment is supported by the APEC Secretariat and IFPMA.  

“In the biopharmaceutical sector, we know that ethics and business integrity stimulate the best value across the health economy. Integrity fosters trust among stakeholders that is vital to the innovation and delivery of medicines amidst COVID-19 and for all other health needs. The impact assessment through Vision 2025 will help foster a level playing field in the industry and drive a race to the top,” said Thomas Cueni, Director General of the IFPMA.

Vision 2025 acknowledges that more needs to be done in the next five years to achieve regional alignment and implementation in ethical business practices while advancing the best interest and health of patients. These efforts are also crucial to COVID-19 response and recovery. 

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