Six Principles that Guide AMAG’s Promise to Patients and Families
October 27, 2016 | AMAG News
BY WILLIAM K. HEIDEN, CEO OF AMAG PHARMACEUTICALS
It’s been hard to miss some recent negative headlines about the pharmaceutical industry. Drug pricing is once again in the news, and some difficult-to-defend situations are fueling some of the current political discourse. While it can be disheartening to hear about isolated actions that tarnish the industry’s reputation, I am optimistic that the dialogue will result in some positive change. These challenges also drive industry leaders to take a good, hard look in the mirror to ensure that we are living up to our own internal values.
At AMAG, we believe, and have formally stated, that we put patients and their families at the center of everything we do. Our approach to corporate decision-making is similarly focused: we bring therapeutics to market in a patient-centric way, and invest in research, education, support and partnerships to benefit patients and the communities we serve.
The cultural ethos at AMAG, which has been and is thoughtfully nurtured by leaders and employees throughout the company, is all about Aiming Higher—in every aspect of our work. We developed a set of core values several years ago, and they are not just nice sounding words on a page. They have become a part of a fabric that keeps our employees knitted together, and they’ve become a framework from which to work through the daily decisions that impact our business—from the development of our growth strategy, to our employee hiring and performance evaluation processes, to how we prioritize our socially responsible investments. It’s exactly in challenging times that a company can lean on its core values to forge a path forward. As that old saying goes, “You’ve got to stand for something…or you’re going to fall for anything.”
Our company values are an important set of internally oriented statements about who we are and how we operate. However, we have also committed to a set of externally oriented pillars that guide how we pursue our business goals and deliver on our promise to patients and their families:
AMAG Corporate Principles
1. We put the needs of patients, families and healthcare providers at the center of everything we do, including the decisions we make.
The patients we serve confront life-altering health conditions and diseases. Making effective therapies and support services available is an urgent priority. We apply this sense of urgency to our constant pursuit of the best ways we can support patients along their health journey.
Recognizing that a patient’s journey extends far beyond the medicines he or she takes, we collaborate with outside experts to develop and invest in education and support programs to help patients and families better understand and manage the health conditions they face.
While healthcare has made tremendous advances over the past decade, not all patients share equally in this progress. So we are also committed to bridging the health inequities divide affecting our patient populations through meaningful community-based and clinical collaborations, as well as by making research investments.
2. We will continue to invest in the products in our portfolio today—and in the development of new therapies for the future.
We invest in developing new products and therapies that have the potential for greater clinical value than currently available options. Our product development strategy for approved products also focuses on serving more patients, uncovering new benefits or expanding the reach of our patient education and patient resources. We seek to unlock that potential by conducting research to better understand if one or more of our currently marketed products could benefit more patients, or be more useful or convenient for patients and providers to administer or remain compliant with.
By partnering with researchers, patients, healthcare professionals, payers, policymakers and community groups to understand their realities, we can incorporate their viewpoints into our development and business strategies, making these strategies and plans stronger and more effective.
3. We are committed to helping more patients appropriately manage their healthcare by increasing access to safe, effective therapeutics.
We do what it takes to reduce and remove barriers to access that some patients and families may face. Through robust financial assistance, nurse-supported adherence programs and partnerships with home health agencies, we aim to connect patients to the therapies and resources that will help them not only obtain our products but also take them as prescribed by their physician.
We work to ensure that patients and healthcare providers understand the benefits and risks of our medications, so that they can make the best decisions for each individual patient. Through a variety of in-person and online programs, we provide disease state and product education to ensure patients and providers are aware of the safety and efficacy profiles of our therapies. We stand behind our promise to meet and exceed the expectations that patients and healthcare providers have when it comes to ensuring transparency and quality in all that we do. We also support the medical community by funding independently-sponsored research and continuing medical education programs.
We continue to follow and uphold the most rigorous quality standards when it comes to clinical research, laboratory testing and manufacturing standards. We sponsor and/or conduct clinical trials to address research questions in an effort to maximize our benefit to patients, families and society. We are committed to sharing data from our clinical trials in order to maximize the benefit of clinical study information to patients, providers and the healthcare community. We recognize that being transparent about clinical trial results advances science and innovation, and we want to be an active contributor to that progress.
4. We price our products for their value to patients, families and societies.
The pricing and reimbursement of pharmaceuticals is complex. For example, some elements that impact pricing are outside of the manufacturer’s control (e.g. mandatory government rebates). We will continue to partner with payers, policymakers and other key players in the health care continuum to work together to find ways to improve the efficiency and cost-effectiveness of delivering health care products and services.
We believe that pricing of new therapies should be determined through a thorough evaluation of a product’s value to society, with consideration for the investment and innovation required to bring the therapeutic to market. For each new therapy that we market, we will set product pricing parameters based on a quantitative and qualitative assessment of the value of the benefits of the product, and we will be transparent about our pricing, discount and rebate strategies. For each of our marketed therapies, we will target to limit net price increases to single digit increases on an annualized basis.
5. We support a diverse and healthy work force.
We support a work place of diversity and inclusion. Our company, our shareholders and our customers benefit from the dedication of employees who reflect the diverse patient communities we serve. We stand firmly for gender parity, and we embrace diverse perspectives and backgrounds, proactively designing and delivering programs that further these goals.
Our employees are our most valuable company resource, and we are committed to supporting their good health. We encourage employee wellness by offering a variety of employee services in support of healthy lifestyles and families such as diet and fitness programs, and family counseling and drug/alcohol addiction support programs. Our goal to improve health starts with our employees.
6. We learn from the past, but it doesn’t define our future.
We understand the value of collaborating with and seeking constructive feedback from the people we serve. Listening to partners and customers helps us adjust course and stay true to the aim of putting patients and families at the center of all we do. With each new day, we strive to aim higher than we have in the past, reaching beyond our goals and exceeding the expectations others have of us.
We work in a vibrant industry, in exciting times. There will undoubtedly be new opportunities and challenges ahead. I know that our strong set of company values, along with these corporate principles, will continue to provide AMAG with a solid framework to confront uncertainty and to make good decisions that are in the best interest of our many stakeholders. I am optimistic about what lies ahead for AMAG and enthusiastic about our ability to continue to serve patients and their families well.