No industry refuses to bow to the prevailing headwinds of change more than big pharma. If you have a high level of empathy, there are better places to be. Yes, there are people alive today because of the drugs we develop, but too many people are also determining how they will manage when out-of-pocket copays delete their savings. We need change with the new blood of employees that care more about people than profits.
I’ve been writing this BLOG for over 17 years. It’s not work; instead, it’s a passion. When I started my career with Lilly, the emphasis was on patients. I could do many things because I connected patient needs with proposed tactics. I was also lucky to have some excellent managers.
Over time I have seen a lot of troubling things take place. People who don’t belong in the industry moving from one company to another. An emphasis on only promoting positive data while hiding the rest and, of course, a focus on sales. I’ve sat in endless meetings trying to justify programs for patients when the emphasis was on new Rxs. It’s a business. I get that. I don’t understand how so many CEOs can live their wealthy lifestyles while people lose their life savings on cancer drug out-of-pocket costs.
Most of the support I get in posts can’t be published because of legal issues with the writer’s employer. I get a lot of positive feedback from people trying their hardest to bring a sense of consciousness to our industry.
STAT News and Fierce Pharma are industry publications trying to be fair yet honest with the problems of the pharma industry. The others, like DTC Perspective and PM360, and even Med Ad News, have sold their souls for industry ads.
I’m not an idealist. I understand that profit is first in business, but our company is unique. When a cystic fibrosis patient can’t get the medication they need because Vertex has limited the distribution OUS, there is a problem.
My background is in DTC and HCP marketing. I understand how patients and HCPs approach industry marketing. I know things have changed and will continue to evolve. Congress is finally investigating PBMs to try and determine why they’re making so much money and whether they are needed. This is a great first step, but unfortunately, our politicians are for sale to the highest bidders.
I believe that WE can be the necessary change. It will take time and more scrutiny by the media and Congress, but eventually, patients will become more important.
I hope you stay on as a reader. I could have integrated ads, but I chose not to. Thank you all for being a reader, and God bless.