3 questions to Max Pahlow - Member Interpharma Board and Managing Director, Janssen Switzerland - Interpharma

Split contribution to:

28 April 2023

3 questions to Max Pahlow – Member Interpharma Board and Managing Director, Janssen Switzerland

May we ask you to introduce yourself briefly and tell us a little about your current position in your company?

I am the Managing Director of Janssen Switzerland, the pharmaceutical companies of Johnson & Johnson. My role is to lead our Swiss commercial organization together with my leadership team focusing on sales and clinical research to ensure we bring our medicines to patients as fast as possible.

I have a professional background in government affairs, patient advocacy, communication, and policy. I have more than 20 years of global commercial leadership experience in the pharmaceutical industry, from across 5 different countries. I look forward to working closely with the many stakeholders in the Swiss healthcare system for the benefit of Swiss patients and a sustainable healthcare system.

What do you want to focus on in your role as a board member of Interpharma?

Most important to me is to focus on Swiss patients and patient access to innovative new medicines. This is an effort we can both support as an individual company and collectively along with all 23 united Interpharma member companies.

A further topic I would like to focus on is Intellectual Property (IP). The WTO «Trade Related Aspects of Intellectual Property Rights (TRIPS)» international agreement dating from 1995 is especially important for innovative industries that rely on strong IP protections to incentivize the research, development and manufacturing of cutting-edge technologies. Without the strong IP protection, modern medical innovation would not be as successful as it is, and many of the treatments and cures benefiting patients in countries throughout the world today would not exist.  High quality medical Innovation is risky, lengthy and expensive.  The system is built on offering a stable system of IP protection.

How important is Switzerland as a pharmaceutical location for your company? Where and how can Switzerland as a pharmaceutical country continue to improve, how should the framework conditions be adapted?

Switzerland is very important for us. The company acquired Cilag in Schaffhausen in 1959 and in these past 60 years has expanded to more than 5000 employees working across nine pharmaceutical and medical devices sites across the country.

Over the years, Switzerland has been able to establish itself as a very successful pharmaceutical industry hub where patients can access innovations very early. For us as an industry it is critical that we highly prioritize our relationship with our major trading partner, the EU, especially with regards to the Horizon research program.

We see a need for further improvement of framework conditions to ensure the healthcare system is fit for the future. The Swiss location should allow for an innovation-friendly and sustainable healthcare system including a healthcare data ecospace. To do so, it can rely upon its traditional Swiss strengths: open discussion, willingness to compromise, and collaboration among all stakeholders to find practical solutions.  All traits that we share at Johnson & Johnson.

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Interpharma, the association of Switzerland’s research-based pharmaceutical industry, was founded in Basel in 1933.

Interpharma informs the public about issues that are important to the research-based pharmaceutical industry in Switzerland, including the pharma market in Switzerland, healthcare and biomedical research.

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