GHP February 2017

, 1612GH06 Serious About Sickness Novartis is a healthcare company which strives to change the practice of medicine and aspires to approach things differently. We invitedMedical Director and Chief Scientific Officer from Novartis Pharmaceuticals UK Ltd., Dimitrios Georgiopoulos, our ‘CSO of the year 2016’ to tell us more about the firmand his role in its success. Established in 1996, Novartis provides healthcare solutions that improve and extend people’s lives. The firm is made up of three core sectors. The first, innovative medicines develops innovative, specialist medicines for many serious health conditions, including cancers, multiple sclerosis, serious eye conditions, severe psoriasis, severe asthma, heart failure, and rheumatic conditions, among others. The Novartis Group also consists of Sandoz, which develops high quality, affordable products to the NHS including generic medicines and biosimilars, and Alcon, a leader in ophthalmic care, which develops contact lens products and innovative surgical devices. Dimitrios, who has been with the Novartis UK office for three years, with three years additional experience in the same role in Novartis Greece, talks us through the company’s vision and its recent successes. “Here at Novartis we are passionate about what we do and the positive impact we have on patients and societies, and as such we are re-imagining medicine in terms of how we fight disease, deliver treatments to patients and operate as a company. Our ‘Patient Declaration’ outlines our commitment to patients and goes beyond just developing medicines for them. We work to improve healthcare in the UK through our visionary thinking and science-based innovation, and this is translated into the medicines we develop, which are making a real difference to the people who need them. Novartis is role modelling a shift in the value of medicines: we want to be rewarded for the tangible health outcomes our products provide patients.” The most immediate challenge for the UK affiliate of Novartis is around Brexit. There is uncertainty around regulation and clinical trial processes, and around the movement of our people, however, Novarits is encouraged by the government’s industrial strategy and their committment to science in the UK. There are also a number of other challenges within the UK environment, particularly around patient’s access to medicines and the uptake of new innovative medicines, where the UK lags behind many of our European counterparts. In order to overcome this challenge, Novartis collaborates closely with healthcare systems worldwide and the NHS in the UK, to maintain a high quality of health care services. It is this collaborative approach which, according to Dimitrios, is essential to the firm’s ongoing success. “Novartis’ associates are what makes this company succeed. We embrace diversity and we build on our differences. Each and every one of us truly believes in doing what is right for the patient. Our values define our culture and describe the professional behavior we expect from associates. The Medical Department specifically holds a leading role in the development of the pipeline, in ensuring Novartis has all the appropriate data to support the value of our medicines, and in engaging in scientific discussions of high quality with healthcare professionals across the country. “Fundamentally, when I joined the pharmaceutical industry I envisioned that I would work together with my colleagues on establishing our industry as an integral part of the healthcare system. This remains true to this day - I want to continue working with my colleagues, both in the pharmaceutical industry and the NHS towards that vision, with an ultimate goal to serve patients and society.” Looking ahead, Dimitrios is excited for the future as Novartis prepares to develop a new range of solutions designed to build upon its current success and enhance its contribution to the K Company: Novartis Pharmaceuticals UK Ltd Name: Dimitrios Georgiopoulos Job title: Medical Director and Chief Scientific Officer, Novartis Pharmaceuticals UK Website: Twitter: @NovartisUK global healthcare market. “Currently, Novartis’ performance is strong, as our newly launched products have seen strong growth and we have worked hard to bring our operating costs down. We have a strong future strategy, with a number of new data readouts, filings and regulatory decisions expected throughout 2017 and beyond. “Longer term, Novartis will continue to pursue the development of science based innovation. We have an exciting pipeline ahead which will potentially see us bring much needed therapies for conditions such as migraine, advanced breast cancer, acute heart failure and many more. We are also working on new commercial models and outcome based approaches to address the cost of healthcare and the affordability of medicines.