R&D and innovation are Servier Pharma’s main pillars of operational development, both in Romania and worldwide. BR sat down with Michel Eschenbrenner, the General Manager of Servier Pharma Romania, who talked about the company’s achievements since it entered the local market and its plans for the future.
By Anda Sebesi
What have 30 years of Servier Pharma Romania operations meant for local healthcare services?
Since we entered the Romanian market three decades ago, we’ve placed all our expertise and R&D experience in the service of local patients, in order to better meet their needs and find new treatments. Along the way, we’ve built long-term partnerships that have helped us properly understand and adapt to the Romanian medical context, but we’ve also given back because we believe in the power of togetherness and we are aware of how important strong collaboration is for the entire ecosystem.
We’ve brought innovative practices to the market, from which medical services benefit on daily basis. Our unique business model—we are a pharmaceutical company governed by a non-profit Foundation (Fondation Internationale de Recherche Servier – FIRS)—gives collaborators the confidence that we are a sustainable and stable organisation that can pursue therapeutic progress to serve our patients’ needs. We’ve continued investing in R&D and supporting both online and offline medical education, as well as awareness and prevention programmes, diagnostics campaigns, and scientific events.
So here we are today, 30 years later, and we have over 300 active partnerships on the Romanian market with different societies, scientific and medical associations, patient associations, NGOs, medical colleges, federations, medical universities and institutions, hospitals and clinics.
What have been Servier Pharma Romania’s top achievements during this period?
We treat around 2 million patients every month in Romania using Servier medicines, which means 12 percent of the adult population here. We hold the 3rd position in counting units and the 6th place in terms of value of the market share.
We provide support in areas such as cardiology, where we are market leaders, type II diabetes—where we rank second in the number of patients treated and treat about 20 percent of patients registered by the National Institute of Public Health Statistics—as well as psychiatry and, lately, oncology. In fact, it is the Group’s ambition to become a leader in oncology, too.
Besides our active involvement in local medical education and our multitude of partnerships, Servier is a true supporter of phase IV studies. In the last two years, two epidemiological studies—a national and an international one—have been carried out in Chronic Venous Disease, with the participation of more than 150 family doctors, dermatologists, and surgeons. These are valuable studies highlighting the impact of the pandemic on the management of patients with chronic venous disease.
Last but not least, I would like to mention Servier’s ambitious local approach in terms of social responsibility. We have been collaborating with over 25 associations and foundations since 2018 to provide access to education and medical services for disadvantaged groups, to prevent and reduce early school leaving, train medical and teaching staff, provide psychological support for patients and healthcare professionals, and so much more.
How does Servier Pharma Romania contribute to progress on the Romanian medical market?
We constantly launch our innovative pro-ducts in Romania. In recent years, Servier has significantly accelerated its investment in hard-to-treat cancers with more than 50 percent of research and development dedicated to deliver significant advances in areas of high unmet need that may truly move the needle for our patients. For more than 3 years now, we have made oncological treatments available in Romania for colorectal, gastric, and pancreatic cancers, as well as for acute lymphoblastic leukemia. We go beyond the innovation brought by our products; by working with the medical community in Romania, we explore new programmes to support patients.