The Role of Pharmaceuticals in Public Health

Access to Essential Medicines as a Key Determinant to Universal Health Coverage

Health Reform, Universal Health Coverage, And Access To Medicines

Pharmaceutical Public Health: The BUSPH Vision

Thursday, September 15, 2016

9 a.m.–5:30 p.m.
Instructional Building
72 East Concord Street
Hiebert Lounge
Full Agenda
#BUSPH40 #BUSPHSymposia

Symposium Summary

What is the role of pharmaceuticals in a prevention and public health agenda? The symposium will explore this question by engaging public and private sector actors.


Olusoji O. Adeyi

Director, Health, Nutrition, and Population Global Practice, World Bank Group, Washington, DC

Olusoji O. Adeyi is the director of the Health, Nutrition and Population Global Practice at the World Bank Group. He has served as the World Bank’s sector manager for health, nutrition, and population in Eastern and Southern Africa, with responsibilities for the institution’s support for policies, strategies, and programs in the region. Adeyi was founding director of the Affordable Medicines Facility-malaria (AMFm) at the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis, and Malaria. Formerly coordinator of public health programs at the World Bank, Adeyi led a number of initiatives on global public health policies and strategies, as well as analyses of the integration of health systems and health interventions. Adeyi has extensive experience in policies, strategies, and programs for health systems, service delivery, and disease control at the global, regional, and country levels in Africa, Eastern Europe, and Central Asia. He has also had responsibilities with the Federal Ministry of Health in Nigeria, the World Health Organization, UNAIDS, and the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health. He has authored research papers and books on service delivery, quality of care, maternal health, health financing, HIV/AIDS, tuberculosis, malaria, and chronic non-communicable diseases.

Margaret Ewen

Coordinator, Global Projects (Pricing), Health Action International, Netherlands

Margaret Ewen is a New Zealander, a pharmacist (currently completing a PhD at Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam), and for the last 15 years, has worked at Health Action International (HAI) in Amsterdam.

Since 2001, Ewen has co-coordinated the WHO/HAI Project on Medicine Prices and Availability and provided technical assistance to more than 100 surveys, in all regions of the world, that have used the WHO/HAI survey tool. She developed the WHO/HAI price database, which continues to be updated as new surveys are completed. Ewen also coordinated the development of a series of pricing policy reviews and has worked with a number of governments to develop policies to improve medicine availability and affordability. More recently, Ewen developed a tool for comparing the price and availability of locally produced and imported medicines.

Ewen is currently working on a study titled “Addressing the Challenges and Constraints on Insulin Sources and Supply (ACCISS)” with BUSPH Professor Richard Laing and David Beran (University of Geneva), as well as a large group of international experts, including Veronika Wirtz and Warren Kaplan from BUSPH, to improve access to insulin.

Ewen is also interested in drug promotion, and in 2002–2003 led a campaign in Europe against relaxing the ban on direct-to-consumer advertising of prescription medicines.

Prior to joining HAI, Ewen was a senior adviser at Medsafe, New Zealand’s medicines regulatory authority.

Erin Hasselberg

Director, Pharmaceuticals Certificate Program and Adjunct Clinical Assistant Professor, Global Health, Boston University School of Public Health
Presentation with Richard Laing

Erin Hasselberg is the director of the Pharmaceuticals Certificate Program and an adjunct clinical assistant professor in the Department of Global Health at BUSPH. She teaches the two-time Teaching Award winner course GH 722: Supply Chain Management for Improved Health System Performance. Hasselberg spends 40 percent of her time with BUSPH and the other 60 percent as the manager for global health supply chains in the Humanitarian Response Lab at MIT’s Center for Transportation and Logistics. Hasselberg is responsible for MIT’s engagement in the $20 million CDC-funded Academic Consortium Combating Ebola in Liberia (ACCEL) project as well as new business development for MIT’s global health supply chain portfolio. Hasselberg previously served as a senior technical advisor with the Center for Health Logistics at John Snow, Inc. With more than 12 years of experience working with public health supply chains in resource-limited settings, Hasselberg has focused primarily on strengthening the capacity of people and organizations in supply chain management. She has worked with Ministries of Health, US Government, non-governmental organizations, private companies, and academic institutions in more than a dozen countries in Africa, Asia, and Latin America via her technical roles on the USAID | DELIVER PROJECT, PEPFAR’s flagship Supply Chain Management System project, and the board of the People that Deliver Global Initiative. During Hasselberg’s tenure with USAID’s two largest supply chain contracts, she oversaw the sustainable inclusion of supply chain management modules in more than 25 higher education institutions in lower- and middle-income countries. Hasselberg earned her MS from the Harvard T.H. Chain School of Public Health and BS from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.

Richard Laing

Professor, Global Health, Boston University School of Public Health
Presentation with Erin Hasselberg

Richard Laing is a professor in the Department of Global Health at BUSPH and is an extraordinary professor at the University of Western Cape South Africa. At both schools, he teaches about pharmaceutical topics within the newly emerging discipline of pharmaceutical public health.

Originally trained as a medical doctor, Laing worked for the Ministry of Health in Zimbabwe for more than 18 years, during which time he undertook postgraduate masters and doctoral studies on community health for developing countries and on comparative health systems and policy analysis. After leaving Zimbabwe in 1989, he spent six years working for Management Sciences for Health (MSH) where he coordinated the International Network for the Rational Use of Drugs. Following his work with MSH, Laing taught international public health at BUSPH for seven years before joining WHO as a medical officer. He was actively involved in work on capacity building related to pharmaceutical policy, medicine pricing, health systems, implementation research, and rational use during his ten years at WHO.

Professor Laing has published an extensive list of academic publications and is one of the editors and authors of the second edition of Managing Drug Supply. He is also one of the authors of the Priority Medicines for Europe and World 2004 and 2013 reports, and was the editor of the World Medicines Situation 2011 report.

Professor Laing holds an MBChB and MD from the University of Zimbabwe, an MSc from the University of London, and an honorary doctorate from Utrecht University.

Ye Lu

Professor and Director of Health Economics, School of Public Health, Fudan University, Shanghai, China

Lu Ye is director of the Department of Health Economics, School of Public Health at Fudan University, China. She is a member of the World Health Organization (WHO) Expert Advisory Panel on Drug Policies and Management. She is also a member of Advisory Committee, the center of drug pricing evaluation for the National Development and Reform Commission (NDRC), as well as being an executive committee member of the China Network of Training & Research in Health Economics and Financing in the Ministry of Health (MOH). She has been a short-term consultant on e-learning in China for the World Bank. Her main research fields include the burden of disease, economic evaluation of health intervention program, drug pricing policy, and national essential medicine policy. She has worked in 20 research projects as principal investigator, with funding from the National Social Science Foundation, WHO, MOH, NDRC, and Shanghai Bureau of Health, as well as others. The study on essential medicine policy in China was funded by MOH, WHO, and UNDP, this project was one of nine projects which are reverent to new health care reform. The research findings and policy suggestion became very important reference in formulated new health care reforms. Her monograph, titled The Study on Essential Medicines Policy in China, was published in 2009. She worked in the Department of Essential Medicine and Pharmaceutical policy, WHO in Geneva as a visiting scholar in 2009. During that period, she has written a chapter of the World Medicines Situation titled Medicines Expenditures, which was published by the World Health Organization in August 2011. She has published more than 40 papers on domestic peer-reviewed journal as a first author or correspondent author since 2002.

Peter Maybarduk

Director, Access to Medicines & Knowledge Economy Group at Public Citizen, Washington, DC

Peter Maybarduk directs Public Citizen’s access to medicines and knowledge economy group, which helps partners around the world overcome high-price pharmaceutical monopolies and secure the benefits of science, technology, and culture for all. Maybarduk has provided technical assistance to international organizations and to public agencies and civil society groups in more than three dozen countries. He is an intellectual property expert and a visiting fellow with the Information Society Program at Yale Law School. Maybarduk’s work has yielded HIV/AIDS medicine price reductions, new state access to medicines policies, and global shifts toward anti-counterfeiting policies that safeguard generic competition. His analysis and strategy helped eliminate many life-threatening measures from the proposed Trans-Pacific Partnership. Maybarduk’s work has been covered in The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, The Times of India, The Guardian, and other major papers. He studied technology law at the University of California at Berkeley and anthropology at the College of William and Mary in Virginia.

Stefan J. Oschmann

President, IFPMA; Chairman and CEO of Merck KGaA, Darmstadt, Germany

Stefan J. Oschmann has been chairman of the Executive Board and CEO of Merck KGaA, Darmstadt, Germany since May 2016. Previously Oschmann served as the vice chairman and deputy CEO. In this role, he was responsible for strategy development of the whole Group.

Oschmann joined Merck KGaA, Darmstadt, Germany in 2011 as CEO of the former Biopharma business and member of the Executive Board. He led the transformation of Biopharma by optimizing the cost structure and improving the efficiency of the research and development model, including a clear portfolio prioritization. From 2013 to 2014 he was responsible for the healthcare businesses. In that role, he oversaw Biopharma, Consumer Health, Allergopharma, and Biosimilars.

Before joining Merck KGaA, Darmstadt, Germany, Oschmann worked for US pharmaceutical company MSD, where he served as president of emerging markets. Other positions included member of senior management and corporate officer with responsibility for the business in Europe, the Middle East, Africa, and Canada; senior vice president in charge of worldwide human health marketing; and vice president of Europe and the German business.

Oschmann started his career at the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) in 1985, before moving to the German Animal Health Federation (BfT), a member association of the German Chemical Industry Association (VCI), in 1987. Oschmann studied veterinary medicine at Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität in Munich from 1977 to 1982 and earned a doctorate there in 1985. He is married and has two children.

Jonathan D. Quick

President and Chief Executive Officer, Management Sciences for Health, Boston, MA

Jonathan Quick, a family physician and health management specialist, is the president and CEO of Management Sciences for Health (MSH). An international nonprofit organization with teams in Africa, Asia, and Latin America, MSH builds local capacity to achieve greater health impact through stronger health systems. Quick was director of Essential Drugs and Medicines Policy at the World Health Organization from 1996 to 2004. Prior to that he served with MSH as founding director of the drug management program/center for pharmaceutical management, then as a long-term advisor for the Afghanistan Health Sector Support Project and the Kenya Health Care Financing Project. From 1982 to 1984 he practiced family medicine in Oklahoma served in the US Indian Health Service.

Quick has worked in international health since 1978, and has carried out assignments in more than 60 countries in Africa, Asia, Latin America, and the Middle East. He is the senior editor of Managing Drug Supply, co-author of the Financial Times Guide to Executive Health, and has written more than 100 other books, articles, and chapters. He is on the faculty of the Harvard Medical School Department of Global Health and Social Medicine and Boston University School of Public Health, and is a fellow of the Royal Society of Medicine. He has a first degree from Harvard University and an MD, with distinction in research, and master’s of public health from the University of Rochester. He serves as chair of the Global Health Council.

Vin Sharma

Senior Director of Business Planning and Program/Alliance Management at Alnylam Pharmaceuticals, Boston, MA

Vin Sharma (BUSPH ’02) has been in the pharmaceutical industry for more than 15 years, having worked across the product life cycle from early-stage discovery to commercialization. He has worked in functions spanning program management, alliance management, marketing, patient services, and medical information in a range of therapeutic areas including in orphan, infectious, CNS-related, and renal disease.

As senior director of program and alliance management at Alnylam Pharmaceuticals, Sharma and his team work with internal experts and external partners to effectively manage and progress drug development in the novel field of RNAi therapeutics. Prior to his current role at Alnylam, Sharma held a number of positions within the commercial division of Vertex Pharmaceuticals, including in global marketing, US marketing, market development and launch planning. He is also a former consultant with The Boston Consulting Group (BCG), during which time he developed strategies for Fortune 500 pharmaceutical companies and government agencies, including the FDA and NIH.

In addition to his MPH from Boston University, Vin has an MBA from MIT’s Sloan School of Management and a bachelor’s degree in Nneuroscience from Brandeis University. Sharma resides in Natick with his wife and two children.

Pius Tih

Director, Cameroon Baptist Convention Health Services, Cameroon

Tih Pius Muffih, a Cameroonian, obtained a law degree in 1982 from Yaounde University in Cameroon before proceeding to London for post-graduate studies in hospital and health service administration. Shortly after that, he was admitted to Boston University for an MPH. He graduated in 1992 and then continued with PhD courses at several universities, including BU. After the coursework, he returned to Cameroon and later was awarded the Copeland Fellowship, which enabled him to return to the US to complete his research and graduate with a distinction in community health from William Carey International University. Since then he has done many other short courses and fellowships at Umea University Sweden, Harvard University, University of North Carolina, and Inwent in Germany.

Tih has been director of health services for the Cameroon Baptist Convention Health Service since 1985. He cumulated this position from time to time with many other high-level positions, such as director of a family planning project funded by the John Hopkins International Education in Gynecology and Obstetrics (JHPIEGO) from 1985 to 1992, director of an HIV and AIDS program funded by CDC Atlanta, president of the National Drug Procurement and Distribution, and chair of many other national structures. The Cameroon Baptist Convention Health Services (CBCHB) that he heads is second only to the government of Cameroon in providing quality and affordable health services in the country.

Led by Tih, the CBCHB started the first program in Cameroon for Prevention of Mother to Child HIV transmission in February 2000, and in 2004 received a grant from Columbia University to provide antiretroviral treatment to HIV-positive mothers who met treatment criteria. In 2006–2007, Tih participated in the Public Health Leadership Institute (PHLI) at the University of North Carolina (UNC) as part of the Cameroon team, and their public health project saw a reduction of HIV incidence in the northwest region of Cameroon. One of the interventions that he took back home and implemented as result of his participation was HIV partner notification, which was launched in 2007 after he attended training on partner notification/contact tracing at UNC and the North Carolina Department of Health. He used the knowledge and experience gained in North Carolina to train a cadre of health advisors who have integrated partner notification services into routine health services in four regions in Cameroon. The CBCHB initiated the Women’s Health Program (WHP) in 2007, which uses digital cervicography by trained nurses to screen for cervical cancer, as well as the Advanced Life Support in Obstetrics (ALSO) Program, which has spread into many regions of the country.

Tih is currently the director of health services for the CBC Health Board, oversees the functioning of a major central pharmacy for the CBCHB, and has chaired the National Central Pharmacy Board for more than five years.

He directed the family planning programs sponsored by the John Hopkins Program for International Education in Gynecology and Obstetrics in the Northwest Region of Cameroon; during this time, he laid down the groundwork for family planning services in the country. Since 1992 he has been the representative of Faith Based Organizations in the Northwest Regional Fund for Health Promotion, a body that procures and distributes drugs in the region. He has been the project director and principal investigator of the “HIV Free Project for the Four Most Populated Regions of Cameroon (Northwest, Southwest, Centre and Littoral), 2011-2016.”  This is a CDC-PEPFAR funded project that is currently stimulating the UNAIDS “90–90–90” treatment project.

He has been awarded the Copeland Fellowship from Amherst College, the Boston University School of Public Health Alumni Award, the Knight of Cameroon Order of Valor Award; the International Leadership Award from the Elizabeth Glaser Pediatric AIDS Foundation; and the HIV and AIDS Annual Award from the US Embassy in Cameroon.

Veronika J. Wirtz

Associate Professor, Global Health, Boston University School of Public Health

Veronika J. Wirtz is a pharmacist, educator, and researcher with more than 10 years of experience in international public health focusing on health system strengthening and program evaluations of medicines access and utilization. Currently, Wirtz is associate professor of global health at BUSPH, where she teaches courses in health systems, pharmaceuticals in public health, and non-communicable diseases. She is a visiting professor of the National Institute of Public Health (INSP) in Mexico and coordinator of a student exchange program between the institutions of her affiliation. Her interests and expertise include medicines price analysis, generic medicines policies, access to medicines for non-communicable diseases, and the role of the private sector to promote equitable access and efficient use of medicines in low- and middle-income countries. She recently became the co-chair of The Lancet Commission on Essential Medicine Policies. From 2004 to 2012 she was researcher and lecturer at the National Institute of Public Health (INSP) in Mexico and a founding member and Head of the Medicines in Public Health Research Group, a multi-disciplinary team of 15 experts in health economics, epidemiology, social science carrying out pharmaceutical policy analysis in Mexico and Latin America. She has regularly taught short courses in Pharmacoepidemiology and Medicines Utilization Research at INSP in Mexico. She has worked as a technical advisor for various international organizations, among them the World Health Organization, the Pan American Health Organization, the Global Fund to fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria, the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, Alliance for Health Systems and Policy Research, Health Action International, and the Ford Foundation. She has also worked with the Ministry of Health in Mexico on various program evaluations and capacity building initiatives. She received her training as a pharmacist from Albert-Ludwigs-University in Freiburg, Germany, and her Master in Clinical Pharmacy and PhD from the University of London.