Leadership & Management

Resuming face to face interactions with healthcare professionals post COVID-19

Health Industry Hub | June 4, 2020 |
[Total: 1    Average: 4/5]

As countries lift lockdown restrictions, the international pharma industry body, IFPMA, provides its members with ethical considerations on when and how to resume in-person meetings with healthcare practitioners and other stakeholders within the healthcare system.

During the COVID-19 pandemic, biopharmaceutical companies proactively interrupted face-to-face interactions between their representatives and physicians, in order to protect patients, healthcare professionals, and their own employees, and have replaced in-office visits and face-to-face congresses with online platforms, virtual meetings, webinars, etc.

Maintaining dialogue and scientific exchange with the medical community is critical to inform physicians about new possible treatments, alternative treatment protocols, product supply or safety/efficacy data. This meaningful engagement is even more critical during the COVID-19 pandemic, as physicians contend with the many medical questions of how the virus could affect their patients’ existing treatments and at the same time need to remain informed about general scientific information and treatment options. 

Register & join 22,000+ industry professionals in reading the latest industry news & engaging content from Health Industry Hub, the ONLY one-stop-hub connecting Australia’s Pharma, MedTech and Biotech industry professionals.

“During the lockdown, employees have stepped away from healthcare sites to limit the spread of the virus and protect patients, while maintaining remote interactions to continue to share scientific knowledge” explains Rady Johnson, Chair of the IFPMA Ethics and Business Integrity Committee, and Chief Compliance, Quality and Risk Officer at Pfizer.

Looking to the future, he adds “Maintaining productive dialogue and scientific exchange with the medical community is central to ensuring that all patients, COVID and non-COVID, receive the treatments needed to support their overall health and well-being. But even as doors open up, we want to preserve that dialogue and partnership without risk to the safety of patients, customers, our employees and communities. We remain committed to appropriately engaging healthcare professionals in-person when it is safe to do so, alongside our continued use of remote interaction channels.”

In these unprecedented times and the high level of unpredictability, the biopharmaceutical industry has found that its recently launched Ethos has been indispensable in helping provide the necessary framework to anchor ethical decision-making, where no specific rules could have previously been anticipated. This principles-driven approach will continue to guide IFPMA members’ conduct as they adapt to the evolving COVID-19 operating environment.

Going forward, through an ongoing dialogue with its external stakeholders, IFPMA is intending to provide additional guidance on what the “new normal” for engagements with healthcare professionals will look like. See guidance document at the end of the page.

Dr Catherine Duggan, CEO of the International Pharmaceutical Federation said “FIP welcomes this timely document to support our pharmaceutical industry colleagues in appropriate engagement amid new environments presented by the COVID-19 pandemic. This framework helps to address the professional sensitivities and thus strengthens the collaboration opportunities with the industry partners. This guidance on how to resume in-person interactions for the purpose of engagement and scientific exchange shows consideration for the needs of healthcare professionals during this challenging time. This is very timely guidance in the times of a global pandemic with unprecedented impact.”

Dr Otmar Kloiber, Secretary General of the World Medical Association (WMA) said “We expect from the pharma industry to carefully seek with all of us a “new normal”. This does include respect for the still increased workload of many health professionals, the strict requirements for protection, especially hygiene and distancing, virtual communication wherever possible and the engagement for an ecological way of recovery.”

Thomas Cueni, Director General of IFPMA added: “From the first days of the COVID-19 pandemic, industry has been united in its response, acting with urgency and integrity. Society needs to know it can count on the biopharmaceutical industry. We have a responsibility to work tirelessly and rapidly to tap into the industry’s innovation capabilities to bring solutions. This has resulted in hundreds of potential therapies, vaccines and diagnostics to contain and end COVID-19 being developed at unimaginable speed. At the same time, companies have managed to maintain a steady supply of vital medicines and vaccines for patients with other life-threatening diseases.”

About the author

About the author

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit. Nam luctus finibus scelerisque. Nunc bibendum ipsum sed augue fringilla fringilla. Nullam at consectetur leo. Praesent viverra rutrum porta. Quisque vitae mi vel purus vulputate tincidunt. Class aptent taciti sociosqu ad litora torquent per conubia nostra, per inceptos himenaeos. Suspendisse et mi quis nisi rhoncus feugiat at ac tellus. Sed aliquam sodales nulla ac auctor. Sed pretium lobortis purus accumsan ullamcorper. Phasellus sodales vel odio in lobortis. Duis maximus sagittis bibendum. Interdum et malesuada fames ac ante ipsum primis in faucibus. Nunc dictum tincidunt ipsum in vestibulum. Donec ut sem consectetur, aliquam quam vitae, pharetra orci. Nam egestas non velit eu rhoncus. Duis congue neque non lacus tincidunt porta. Vestibulum ultricies pulvinar sem, molestie congue dui aliquet non.
  • Ut imperdiet leo id lorem fermentum consectetur.
  • Ut vitae orci et dui varius tincidunt.
  • Ut id magna non libero vestibulum pharetra ac faucibus nulla.
Aliquam erat volutpat. Vestibulum vitae varius diam. Nulla eget congue ante. Nunc ullamcorper sagittis augue vel dictum. Mauris finibus nibh ut pulvinar auctor. Vestibulum ut faucibus nisi. Orci varius natoque penatibus et magnis dis parturient montes, nascetur ridiculus mus. Quisque porta tortor ac justo malesuada elementum. Nulla tellus ante, cursus nec ex sit amet, suscipit bibendum arcu. Duis posuere orci dui, et mollis enim dictum at. Sed ullamcorper, sapien ut vulputate viverra, sem purus porttitor tellus, nec mattis mauris ligula sed risus. Nulla sagittis id ipsum eu mattis. Link to full profile

News & Trends - Medical Technology

MedTech News - Private health insurer looking to invest in Australian private hospitals

Private health insurer looking to invest in Australian private hospitals

Health Industry Hub | July 15, 2020 |

MedTech News: In a recent opinion piece Dr Bill Coote, former AMA Secretary General and former Director of the Medicare […]


News & Trends - Pharmaceuticals

Pharma News - Merck Australia supports the first Australian-developed COVID-19 vaccine - Sypharma and Vaxine

Merck Australia supports the first Australian-developed COVID-19 vaccine

Health Industry Hub | July 15, 2020 |

Pharma News: Sypharma, an Australian biopharmaceutical formulation company, announced manufacturing of COVAX-19 and Advax adjuvant for Covid-19 in partnership with […]


News & Trends - Pharmaceuticals

Pharma News - Precision prescribing to combat Australia’s expected surge in mental illness

Precision prescribing to combat Australia’s expected surge in mental illness

Health Industry Hub | July 15, 2020 |

Pharma News: COVID-19 social isolation, familial and community disconnection, shock, job loss and health fears create the perfect storm for […]



Medical Pharma Biotech MedTech - $47M accelerator program for MedTech, Biotech and Pharma sectors in diabetes and cardiovascular disease

$47M accelerator program for MedTech, Biotech and Pharma sectors in diabetes and cardiovascular disease

Health Industry Hub | July 15, 2020 |

Medical News: The operation of the Australian Government’s $47 million Targeted Translation Research Accelerator (TTRA) initiative for diabetes and cardiovascular […]