Reputation of Pharma companies according to patients

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Patient View has made public the results of the Corporate Reputation of Pharma survey, now in its ninth Italian edition.

Between November 2022 and February 2023, the opinions of 104 groups of Italian patients were collected on the performance of the pharmaceutical industry in 2022. These groups have the characteristic of being able to comment on the performance of pharmaceutical companies not only because they understand the needs of patients but above all because they are themselves connected to all the other stakeholders of the healthcare system.

The reputation of pharmaceutical companies improves

Seventy-five percent of patient groups said the pharmaceutical industry’s corporate reputation was “excellent” or “good” for them, up from 66% who said so in 2021.

67% of the patient groups interviewed also expressed an “excellent” or “good” opinion on the level of innovation of the Italian pharmaceutical industry, compared to 62% the previous year.

There therefore seems to have been an improvement in the reputation that companies have with patients; Despite this, one point is still commented negatively, namely the fair pricing policies and the availability of Italian patients to access medicines. In fact, in 2022 only 11% of Italian patient groups judged the pharmaceutical industry’s ability to define fair pricing policies to be “excellent” or “good”, similarly only 30% of them declared that companies offer the right access to medicines in Italy.

Key themes for 2023

The Italian pharmaceutical industry remains under fire for its historic lack of transparency.

In 2022, the law (62/2022) on transparency in the pharmaceutical sector came into force with the aim of improving patients’ perception of the healthcare sector and fighting corruption, requiring the disclosure of financial relationships to external stakeholders, including groups of patients.

For now only the companies belonging to Farmindustria have disclosed these reports, even if the new law requires all companies to comply with them. Called “Transparent Healthcare”, this new reporting platform requires companies to upload their financial reports semi-annually.

Another obligation that Italian pharmaceutical companies must fulfill by 2025 is to implement EU legislation aimed at harmonizing health technology assessments (HTA) and improving patient access to new medicines. To comply, the entire Italian healthcare system, currently decentralized and operating on a regional basis, will have to change: many patient groups are already moving to put an end to regional inequalities.

Business results

The 13 companies judged were evaluated on the basis of two main criteria: size of revenues or at the explicit request of the company itself or the patient group. The companies in question are: AbbVie, AstraZeneca, Bayer, Bristol Meyer Squibb, Eli Lilly, GSK, Janssen, Merck & Co/MSD, Novartis, Pfizer, Roche, Sanofi, Takeda.

Of all 13 companies, according to the evaluation of the groups of Italian patients who were familiar with them, we find on the podium

  1. Roche
  2. Bristol Meyers Squibb
  3. Merck &Co/MSD

According, however, to the evaluation of the groups that have a working relationship with these companies, the ranking is:

  1. Roche
  2. AstraZeneca
  3. Merck & CO/MSD