The great and the good of planet pharma converged on the Lancaster Hotel in London for, quite simply, the greatest award ceremony in the galaxy (that’s unbiased journalism, right there, folks!) John Pinching reflects on a delightful evening.
During 13 glorious years the Pf Awards has been an increasingly-important fixture on the pharma industry’s hectic calendar. It’s a chance to reflect on the high points of the last 12 months, reward the supreme efforts of pharma’s finest and meet up with vaguely recognisable faces on the dance floor! This year’s shindig was perhaps the most exciting so far with new categories, inspirational performances and, in Ed Byrne, a compelling host.
The evening got underway with the dulcet Black Country tones of Melanie Hamer who – in her capacity as Events Director for Pf Awards and a Director of Events 4 Healthcare – has overseen every ceremony to date. She was keen to point out how the Pf Awards have evolved in accordance with the demands of the industry, and why they continue to set a benchmark for the most passionate people in the business.
It was my very first Pf Awards and I was most honoured when asked to present the award for best company (the most notoriously unpronounceable organisation in the history of pharma, naturally). The night before I had dreamt that my pilgrimage to the stage was greeted with a chorus of abuse, but in reality the crowd were consummately professional and, as a result, the words ‘Boehringer Ingelheim’ tripped off the tongue effortlessly!
As the names of other winners resonated around the venue, it was very clear from the spectacularly wild celebrations that these endorsements are treasured acknowledgments of a job well done.
Now enjoy our photo album which commits those unforgettable moments to the hallowed pages of the very magazine that gave the awards their name.
Adding a Pf Award to the mantelpiece will be used to inspire several companies as they aim to reach even greater heights. Here’s how one of the winners will be celebrating.
Lundbeck: Working in partnership
The Pf 2013 Joint Working award was won by Jo Livingston, Lundbeck’s Parkinson’s disease specialist.
Jo Livingston worked with partners in primary and secondary care across the Sunderland NHS to develop an integrated care pathway for local people suffering from Parkinson’s disease. An account of the project’s goals and outcomes appeared in an HSP Partnership in Practice supplement in 2012.
A medium-sized pharmaceutical company, Lundbeck specialises in treatments for mental health and neurological disorders. The company has devised a strategy for 2013 that builds on the stability the organisation has achieved and focuses on its three main pillars of strength: delivering excellent results, giving value to customers and being a great place to work. The company’s strategic priorities are complemented by its four operating principles: to be ambitious and take action; to own the future; to be better for less; and to create results together.
In recent years, Lundbeck UK has focused strongly on working in partnership with the NHS to improve the care of people with Alzheimer’s disease and Parkinson’s disease. Jo Livingston’s project is a good example. According to Andrew Jackson, Sales & Marketing Manager for Azilect, there are two reasons for this strategic focus: “The changing NHS and the relationship that the pharmaceutical industry has with it means we need to work jointly, rather than simply promoting drugs. Services for neurological disorders are very varied across the UK, so it’s important that we partner with the NHS to make them better for mutual benefit.”
What made Jo Livingston’s project stand out among the finalists? “It was a true partnership project,” Jackson explains. “She got buy-in from various stakeholders within the NHS and she worked in partnership with them, which is rare. We’ve evolved over time to a model where we’re jointly sharing projects, as opposed to the traditional model where pharma gives money and the NHS goes and does something.”
While joint working is a team achievement, that doesn’t mean good leadership isn’t crucial. Jackson comments: “Clinicians and stakeholders in the NHS are very, very busy, and for the project to actually be seen through and implemented correctly, Jo needed to be the one who was spearheading that and who was driving the meetings, their content and their output, to get towards the end result.”
As well as winning in the Joint Working category, Lundbeck had five other finalists in the Pf Awards 2013. Jackson puts that success in context: “Eighteen months ago Lundbeck restructured to align to the changing needs of the NHS. We developed a team of regional account directors to tailor Lundbeck’s offering to the needs of the local health economy.” That dynamic response to NHS reform has boosted their reputation both with customers and within the industry.