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World Quality Day 2023: Novartis adds 13,000 years to people’s lives

The pharmaceutical industry is built on a solid foundation of world-class research and a quality assurance process that ensures the safety and efficacy of medicines for patients. Dr Darren Katzman, Head of Medical Affairs at Novartis South Africa, says this significantly impacts society, improves public health standards, and ultimately extends people’s lives.


Understanding the latter’s importance in the overall pharmaceutical ecosystem, Novartis South Africa is celebrating World Quality Day on Thursday, 9 November, by encouraging associates to rethink how they approach quality in their daily work.1-3


“This year’s World Quality Day theme is ‘Realizing your competitive potential’. With a rich history of innovation and a dedication to improving healthcare, Novartis continually strives to improve its medicines and reach more South Africans through strict adherence to quality standards,” says Dr Darren Katzman, Head of Medical Affairs at Novartis South Africa.


As such, Novartis measures the impact and quality of its medicines through a metric referred to as quality-adjusted life-years (QALYs), which measure the additional years of good health a person gains from using these medicines.5-7


The Novartis Social, Environmental and Economic Impact Valuation IV (SEE IV) report indicates that in 2022 the pharmaceutical company reached 1.7 million [JH1] patients in 147[JH2]  markets globally. This resulted in over 13,000 QALYs [JH3] added to people’s lives, and translates to over $255 [JH4] million added in social impact value.8a-8d Katzman attributes these achievements to the organization’s emphasis on quality research in developing their life-saving medicines.


Associates, within Novartis, know this too well and strictly adhere to the guiding principles of the organization’s Quality Management System (QMS) and the requirements and standards of all relevant health authorities. These emphasize the importance of ensuring that the highest quality standards are maintained throughout every level and phase of the product research and development lifecycle.9


The organization [JH5] is driven by its mission to revolutionize healthcare for the benefit of all patients in South Africa by placing substantial emphasis on its industry-leading quality assurance process, and to become a renowned pioneer in shaping healthcare systems, both in the private and public sectors.10


This is seen in the company’s Access Principles, which speaks to its commitment to making its medicines accessible to as many South Africans as possible by reimagining how healthcare professionals and the pharmaceutical industry approach making medicines available to and attainable by all.11


Novartis aims to achieve this goal by implementing tiered pricing models that are more inclusive of the needs of different income levels across South Africa while maintaining the same standard of exceptional quality throughout. It also emphasizes competitiveness in tenders, scaling social business models, and implementing affordability strategies.12


“At Novartis, quality goes beyond ensuring that a product meets predefined quality standards. It’s about meeting the needs of each individual patient by allowing Novartis’ associates to pour their decades’ worth of experience, expertise, and passion for life-saving medicines into their work,” concludes Dr Katzman.

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