Pharma veteran to take up new commercial role at DH

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Current Chief Operating Officer for PGT, Steve Oldfield, will take up the newly created role of Chief Commercial Officer (CCO) at the Department of Health (DH), this October.

Steve Oldfield will be joining the Government Commercial Function where his initial focus will be the creation and development of the commercial strategy that will underpin upcoming negotiations with a variety of commercial suppliers. This includes key engagements with the pharmaceutical industry in particular over the PPRS scheme, under which the NHS currently spend around £8 billion a year.

Oldfield has over 25 years of experience in the healthcare industry. Currently Chief Operating Officer for PGT, a consumer health joint venture between Procter & Gamble and Teva, based in Geneva, he has also worked as UK Managing Director for both Sanofi and Teva. He has also been involved with industry-government initiatives for a number of years, having served on the Board of the ABPI and co-chaired committees looking at the introduction and adoption of new medicines.

Reporting to DH’s Permanent Secretary, Chris Wormald, he will be one of the new cohort of senior commercial managers tasked with improving the delivery and cost performance of the NHS’s supply chain and will report functionally to Gareth Rhys Williams, Government Chief Commercial Officer, and be responsible for ensuring that the DH plays a leading role in the wider Government Commercial Function.

Chris Wormald said: “We face a number of commercial challenges across the health family, not least putting in place the next generation of the medicines pricing scheme, but we see huge opportunities for better delivery for patients and better value for money for the taxpayers from improved commercial skills and experience.”

Paul Baumann, Chief Financial Officer, NHS England, said: “Building strong commercial capability is a high priority for NHS England, as we seek to provide access to the best drugs and treatments for patients in a way which secures the best possible value.”

Steve Oldfield said: “I look forward to working collaboratively across the department, the NHS and the life sciences to find new ways of working for the benefit of patients and the health economy.”

The ABPI welcomed the news of Oldfield’s appointment. Chief Executive, Mike Thompson, said: “Steve is well known to the ABPI.  His extensive experience in senior pharmaceutical roles as UK Managing Director for Sanofi and Teva will provide the DH with valuable industry expertise.

I’m confident that this appointment will also positively impact our ability to have open and transparent negotiations with Government and find win-win solutions in which everyone can have confidence.”