Report published by PatientView

April 2016




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  • Contact: Alex Wyke

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  • Publication date: 
  • Thursday, April 14th, 2016

About this report

London, April 14th, 2016. This report is based on the findings of a PatientView November 2015-January 2016 survey exploring the views of 797 patient groups based in Europe (Western and Eastern) focusing on differing medical specialties. The report provides feedback on the corporate reputation of the European pharma industry during 2015, as well as the performance of 45 pharma companies for six key indicators that influence corporate reputation. Results are compared with those of the previous three years.

For the purposes of this report, the phrase ‘corporate reputation’ is defined as the extent to which pharma companies are meeting the expectations of patients and patient groups.

For this 2015 series of ‘Corporate Reputation of Pharma’ reports, PatientView gave pharma companies the opportunity to tell their own story about their 2015 patient-centric strategies and activities in the field of patient-group relations. In each of the regional reports in the 2015 ‘Corporate Reputation’ series, we will feature, as case studies, the full responses of at least one company. In this report, four companies are featured: AbbVie Europe, Eisai, Janssen EMEA, and Sanofi. 


The six indicators of corporate reputation:

  1. Patient-centricity.
  2. Patient information.
  3. Patient safety.
  4. Useful products.
  5. Transparency.  And ...
  6. Integrity.

The 45 companies analysed:

AbbVie I Actavis I Allergan I Almirall I Amgen I Astellas I AstraZeneca I Baxalta I Bayer I Biogen Idec I Boehringer Ingelheim I Bristol-Myers Squibb I Celgene I Chiesi I Eisai I Ferring I Gedeon Richter I Gilead I Grünenthal I GSK I Hospira I Ipsen I Janssen I Leo I Lilly I Lundbeck I Menarini I Merck & Co I Merck KGaA I Mylan I Novartis I Novo Nordisk I Octapharma I Otsuka I Pfizer I Roche I Sandoz I Sanofi I Servier I Shire I Stada Arzneimittel I Takeda I Teva I UCB I ViiV.  


“All [pharma companies] need to be able to demonstrate that they offer good value for money, that they involve patients, and that they publish research data—irrespective of the success or failure of trials or studies.”

—National patient group in the UK specialising in cancer   


"“The perception [of pharma] has changed in the last years, associating more to research.”

—National patient group in Spain specialising in mental health 



The 797 patient groups in Europe responding to the 2015 ‘Corporate Reputation of Pharma’ survey reported a significant improvement in the corporate reputation of the pharma industry when compared with 2014. The global version of the 2015 survey produced the same finding for pharma worldwide from patient groups across the world.  

45.1% of the 797 patient groups in Europe responding to the 2015 ‘Corporate Reputation of Pharma’ survey stated that the pharma industry as a whole had an “Excellent” or “Good” corporate reputation that year. The equivalent figure for 2014 was 39.4%. Moreover, the 2015 European figure was slightly higher than the 44.7% noted in the global element of the 2015 survey.  

Patient groups in Europe responding in 2015 ranked the pharma industry 5th out of 8 healthcare-industry sectors for corporate reputation—ahead of generics, for-profit health insurers, and not-for-profit health insurers. In 2014, pharma was ranked 6th by patient groups in Europe.

As many as 71% of the patient groups in Europe responding to the 2015 ‘Corporate Reputation of Pharma’ survey described the industry as a whole as “Excellent” or “Good” at making high-quality useful products—a figure about the same as that reported by patient groups in Europe in 2014, and patient  groups worldwide in 2015. Some 68% of patient groups in Europe also stated that the industry was “Excellent” or “Good” at being innovative in 2015—again, a similar figure to that reported by European patient groups in 2014, and those worldwide in 2015. 

Among European countries, patient groups in Eastern Europe, Nordic countries and Spain are the most impressed with pharma's ability to product high quality products. Least impressed is France, where only 36% of the patient groups thought pharma capable. 


How good or bad do you think the pharma industry is in 2015 at producing high-quality products ? Percentage of responses from patient groups in the global survey, according to country/region


BUT ...
like patient groups worldwide, those in Europe  are also critical of pharma for its poor performance at patient centricity, transparency, and fair pricing policieswhich is why they call for companies to improve in these areas.

  • Only (33%) of the 797 patient groups in Europe responding to the 2015 ‘Corporate Reputation of Pharma’ survey described the industry as “Excellent” or “Good” at the corporate-reputation indicator of patient centricity (though the figure is a slight improvement for pharma on the 30% of patient groups in Europe stating the same in 2014).  
  • Only 25% of patient groups in Europe in 2015 thought pharma “Excellent” or “Good” at being transparent—roughly in line with what patient groups in Europe reported in 2014, and patient groups worldwide in 2015.
  • Only 15% of patient groups in Europe responding in 2015 thought pharma “Excellent” or “Good” at having fair pricing policies. As in many other parts of the world, pricing is the  issue most divisive for patient groups and pharma. However, the topic is more acute for patient groups in Western than in Eastern Europe; in Eastern Europe, as many as 30% of patient groups stated that pharma was “Excellent” or “Good” at fair pricing. 



    Out of the 45 companies assessed for corporate reputation by European patient groups in 2015 ...

    • UK-based ViiV is ranked overall number 1 in Europe in 2015.
    • US-based AbbVie is 2nd.
    • US-based Janssen (Pharmaceutical Companies of Johnson & Johnson) is 3rd.
    • Denmark-based Novo Nordisk is 4th.
    • Switzerland-based Novartis and Roche are equal 5th.
    • Belgium-based UCB is 7th.
    • Denmark-based Lundbeck is 8th.
    • US-based Gilead Sciences is 9th.
    • And US-based Pfizer is 10th.

    (Note that in the previous year's European analysis, that of 2014, only 34 companies were examined.) 

    Compared with 2014, there was significant movement in the final rankings for Europe for 2015.   Baxalta makes the biggest jump in the rankings for corporate reputation in 2015 (out of 45 companies) compared with Baxter International in 2014 (out of 34 companies). The increase is most likely due to the July 2015 separation of the original Baxter International into biopharmaceutical and medical-device entities. Baxalta provides treatments for bleeding disorders and rare cancers—products which are familiar to patients and patient groups. Baxter, on the other hand, primarily supplies hospital products—with which patients and patients groups tend to be less well acquainted.


    What are your company’s plans for improving its PAG relations, its patient advocacy, or its patient centricity in 2016 (from your perspective)?


    Extract of Sanofi's response to PatientView's survey:

    “Our patient-centered efforts will continue and remain firmly focused on outcomes that matter to patients. Sanofi is committed to discover, develop and distribute therapeutic solutions focused on patients’ needs. Some patient centricity initiatives, as an example, will focus on innovating patient-support programmes to respond to patient empowerment and self-management needs for outcomes that matter to them.”

    Extract of Eisai's response to PatientView's survey: 

    “At Eisai, human healthcare (HHC) is our goal. We give our first thoughts to patients and their families, and to helping increase the benefits healthcare provides. Eisai believes, through socialisation with patients and their families, our employees can better understand the patient’s condition, the obstacles it presents, as well as possible remedies. Therefore, our employees around the world are encouraged to spend at least 1% of their total business hours interacting with patients.



    PatientView is a UK-based research organisation that consults closely with patient groups, and publicises the work of the patient advocacy movement.