Govt. should regulate quality of drugs and not pharmaceuticals business- Hamid Raza


 Govt. should regulate quality of drugs and
not pharmaceuticals business- Hamid Raza

We all must resolve that negative image of the
Pharma industry must go - Dr. Kaiser Waheed

KARACHI: We need to find an access to the more regulated market in the developed world for which we need support of the Government as well as of Drug Regulatory Authority of Pakistan. (DRAP). When we talk to the authorities, their response is also positive but when it comes to execution, it is missing. The Vision and Function is missing despite the fact that starting from the Minister of State for Health to Secretary Health and Chief Operating Officer of DRAP, all have a sympathetic view. We request that execution of their Vision should be more rapid. 

This was stated by Mr. Hamid Raza Chairman of the PPMA while talking about the challenges faced by the Pakistani Pharmaceutical industry. He was speaking in the inaugural session of the Second Pakistan Pharma Summit organized by PPMA at Karachi on May 3rd 2016.He further pointed out that any new registration means new investment and new employment opportunities. Too much regulation and controls retards the growth of the country as well. In order to bring down the prices, the government should encourage more registration and let the market forces operate, it will bring down the prices. That is what we have witnessed in case of Sovaldi the oral preparation for treatment of Hepatitis-C. He suggested that let the government regulate the drugs included in the WHO list of essential drugs and decontrol all other drugs including the OTC products. Let the Pharma industry make some gains on its investments so that it can generate funding for investment. We need more incentives if we have to have some returns on our investment otherwise the pharmaceutical industry cannot plan for long term. He concluded his address by reiterating that let the government execute its vision on a time-line basis. Let the government regulate the quality of drugs and not the pharmaceuticals business, he added.

Dr. Kaiser Waheed Chairman Origanizing Committe of 2nd Paksitan
Pharma Summet receving mementoe from Mrs. Saira Afzal Tarar
Federal Minister of State for Health at the inaugural session.

Pharmaceuticals, he further stated, was an important industry. Globally its worth has crossed One Trillion US Dollars this year. Total Pharmaceutical Market of Pakistan was only three billion US dollars which is 0.21% of the World Pharmaceuticals market. If the Government of Pakistan supports, we can increase our share in the world pharmaceutical market. Our aim is to cure diseases by making available quality drugs. We believe in quality starting from the raw material to finished drugs. We invest in Research and Development. Pharmaceuticals is the most regulated industry in the world. It makes the maximum value addition.

Continuing Mr. Hamid Raza said that almost 38% of the world pharmaceuticals market was in United States. If we get an opportunity, we can make some inroads in this market as well. Our exports at present was between US$ 200-265 Million. We meet almost 90% of pharmaceuticals needs of the country by drugs produced by national pharmaceutical companies. The  service this industry was providing, the employment opportunities it provides to educated youth is commendable but strict regulations has retarded its growth and development. We in Pakistan spend just about US$ fifteen per person per year on health. We should increase our spending on health so that we have access to quality drugs. Pharmaceutical industry, he reiterated was the biggest employer of graduates in urban areas. National Pharmaceutical industry has made tremendous investments and improved their drug manufacturing facilities to such an extent that now many of them were manufacturing drugs for the multinational companies which was yet another proof of its adherence to quality. Healthcare professionals has also now developed confidence in our products, he added.

Earlier in  his welcome address Dr. Kaiser Waheed Chairman of the organizing committee pointed out the reasons for organizing this Second Pharma Summit and said that  lot of people are working in the pharmaceutical industry. This Summit provides an opportunity to share their vision and mindset with their colleagues. Talking about the theme of the Summit “Glocal Mindset” he said that this word was coined by Syed Jamshed Ahmad Chief Operating Officer of PharmEvo which means “Local Mindset with Global Perspective” which was the way forward for growth and development.  He further stated that let us start talking about good things. People working in Pakistan has Brains, Ministry of Health was supporting us but at times there are delays and there were certain impediments which needs to be resolved.

Some of the Chief Executives of Pakistani Pharmaceutical Industry from (L t  R) Mr. Hanif Sattar,
Mr. Tauqeer-ul-Haq,  Mr. Tariq Wajid, Mr. Hamid Raza, Dr. M.Aslam Afghani, Mr. Zahid Saeed,  
Syed. Nadeem Ahmed, Mr. Sohail Mateen,Mian Muhammad Zaka-ur-Rehman, Dr. Kaiser Waheed,
and Mr. Nadeem Ahmed Chandna photographed at the Second Pakistan Pharma Summit
held at Karachi on May 3, 2016.

Pharmaceutical industry in Pakistan, Dr. Kaiser Waheed opined has many problems and we need to discuss at this Summit how we can improve our working. He also highlighted the salient features of the scientific programme. He urged the Summit participants that let us resolve that the negative image of the pharmaceutical industry must go. We are not all the time working for profits. Our objective is that people of Pakistan must get quality drugs at affordable price. Over the years the life expectancy in Pakistan has increased from fifty seven years to sixty nine years and pharmaceutical industry has played a vital role in this regard. We are determined to ensure that quality drugs remain available all over the country to our people at prices which they can afford, he remarked.

Pharmaceutical marketing in Turbulent Times

Prof. Marcel Corstijens the Unilever Chartered Professor of Marketing at INSEAD who had earlier conducted a workshop on “Good Pharma: How Marketing Creates Value in Pharma” spoke about pharmaceutical marketing in turbulent times. He pointed out that he was shocked to see the figures regarding Pakistan’s spending on Health, Education, Infant Mortality Rate and Still Births as well as Per Capita spending on drugs. One has to know the problem first before one can talk about the solutions. One has to be honest in diagnosis. However, it was heartening to note that things which get measures tend to improve.

Continuing Mr. Marcel said that he has recently written a book on Good Pharma because earlier someone had written a book on Bad Pharma. He pointed out that most industries have their demons.  Food industry was creating problems of obesity in the world.  Cigarette industry was responsible for increasing lung cancer. Pharma industry was getting more competitive with generics and biotechnology. Now scientific evidence is needed. One has to look at response rate and survival rates. Soon many bio similars are going to be out of patent and there will be disappointing Research& Development outcome. Innovations in the Pharma industry are now once again improving because of new knowledge. New stockholders are the other real issues. Treat them as customers. Changes in industry are taking place moving from primary care to specialty care. It will require a different model. Digital and Internet have also brought some changes. It is important to reconcile with commercial imperatives with provision of social good. This is the current most important challenge.

Referring to the marketing of Sovaldi which ensures 90% cure rate in Hepatitis-C, Prof. Marcel said that it costs US$ 84,000 per patient in United States as compared to just few thousand rupees in Pakistan. Pharmaceutical industry was not very greedy which is evident from the facts and figures. Novartis for example has sales of fifty two billion US$ and its net profit was just fourteen million US$ giving a return on assets of just five. Similarly Roche has sales of US$ 50 Billion with net profit margin of 19 and return on assets of twelve. Pfizer has sales of US$ 49 Billion with net profit margin of fourteen and return on assets of just four.  And if one compares these figures with other industries, their Net Profit Margin and Return on Assets was much higher. Now Pharma industry growth has reduced and it is tough for Big Pharma. They have lost values and many of them are facing pressure on prices.

Speaking about how to win pharmaceutical market, Prof. Marcel said that to begin with one should have best product and then adopt different marketing strategies in different countries. First year sales are very important while line extension and marketing were also important. There is no issue of bad products as all ineffective and dangerous drugs are eliminated by FDA and other agencies and they are not marketed. It is difficult to change the mind of Key Opinion Leaders as they need hard evidence. Preparation before formal launching of a new product was also important and it plays a vital role in the success of a product. Referring to the FDA therapeutic improvements criteria, he said, even C category are good drugs. In fact it is the people who make a big success. Having good insight is also important.

On left Dr. Kaiser Waheed Sheikh Chairman of the Organizing Committee of Second Pakistan Pharma
Summit presenting Mementoes to Dr.Iftikahr Jafary, Mr. Anis Shah and Dr. Obaid Ali while on
extreme right Dr. Aslam COO DRAP is presenting Mementoe to Dr. Imran one of the
guest speakers at the conference.

Referring to the launch of Viagra,he said, that CIALIS became a bigger product than Viagra because the people who marketed it had better insight into it. Its effects last for thirty six hours hence the couple and the whole family was relaxed.  It is also important that one must know the company in which one is working and never stop asking why? Criteria for gravity for the industry has changed. One has to go for building Brands and Block Busters. Specialty products and personalized healthcare is becoming very important. Personalized healthcare was a major shift. You need better training of people with better outcome. In the days to come targeted products will be available. Response rate has to be improved. Specialty products will give you some advantage in certain areas. Do not go for everything. Be specific, go slow. Google has entered the Pharma market targeting healthcare of elderly population. He concluded his presentation by predicting that may be in 2020 one of the Pakistani pharmaceutical companies will be a One Billion Dollars industry

Local Mindset - The Human Development Aspect

Mr. Muhammad Imran an International Consultant to the Pharma Industry talked about Local Mindset- the Human Development Aspect. He discussed at length the changes ahead and how to lead the change.  Sometimes leaders are born but leaders are also made and one can develop leadership skills as well. There is always resistance to change due to nostalgia, financial restraints, habits, personal values, self-confidence but leaders always think beyond the Box. Talking about the Information/Change curve he mentioned shock, denial, anger, nostalgia, fear, negotiation, acceptance, recognition and then motivation. It is important to establish a sense of urgency. Create a Vision and concentrate.  At times many projects of change fail because change of vision is unclear, it is not shared or due to weak leadership, there is lack of emotional intelligence, because of employers fear, and environment is hostile for a change or because of poor communication. It is heartening to note that now almost 90% of Pakistan’s drug requirements are met by the National Pharmaceutical companies. He also talked about market access, social responsibility and access to the members in the community as well. Company values, leadership competencies and behaviour, management process, regulations compliance, Sales and Profits and Research and Development all are important, he added.

One must know the core values of their company and it should be Honesty, Respect, and Leadership and keep your people happy. Most people leave their jobs because of the behaviour of their supervisors. They have poor communication skills. He laid emphasis on communications, listening and Feedback. Get more training and resolve the complaints. It is also important to develop performance and recognition culture. One should also ensure consistence performance and repeat success by improving quality of people and their skills. Retain the right people and strengthen the leadership skills of your people. Have talent management processes, know potential of your team and those who work under you. It was also important that one has some succession plan. Almost 70% of learning takes place on the job training, hence seniors should coach and train the people. Almost 20% of learning comes from Feedback while only 10% learning comes from personal training.

Continuing Mr. Imran said that for training, e learning and distance learning facilities are available. He then referred to coaching and mentoring, job rotation, special assignments, offer wider job scope and responsibility, participating in Task Force and projecting team work. Leadership teams are then based on Product Managers and they are the one who will bring in a change, he remarked.