A stakeholder in a pharmaceutical organization is an individual or a group of people with one common goal and interest towards the ownership and activities of the organization (Daft, 2011). In a general organizational setup, stakeholders can be divided into two categories, the primary stakeholder and the secondary stakeholder. The primary stakeholders have the utmost responsibility in a company. They include the company suppliers, consumers using the company's pharmaceutical product, the medical research institute, employees working in the organization and the company shareholders. The primary stakeholders form the basic fundamental foundation towards a company's success or failure because of their participation in the direct economical situation. The secondary stakeholders do not have an integral part in the economic process but they are as useful as the primary stakeholders are. These include the government, trade unions, the media, and political parties and action groups (Hellriegel, Jackson & Slocum, 2007).
In terms of management, having an organization run by individuals can result to the greed and misuse of finances. According to research carried out, about sixty nine percent of corporate executives do not consider the general public's best interest while making decisions and another ninety four percent of corporate executives make their decisions first and foremost on the foundation of making an advancement in their own line of business (Daft, 2011). In modern companies, there are two forms of ownership. The ownership theory of a company is one form of ownership. Here an individual owns the company. The sole purpose of the company is to make great profits over the years with its stakeholder's interests at heart. The stakeholder theory of ownership is the other form of company ownership. This theory argues that such companies have the sole responsibility of promoting good work ethics and create value for the society. Even though the stakeholder theory aims at making profits, it should strive to ensure it creates a source of income for others especially the large community.
Corporate stakeholders and respond to their issues
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Stakeholders in a pharmaceutical company are divided into stages. The first stage of stakeholders includes the key management of the company like the corporate executives, marketing, and the leaders who offer their opinion regarding the pharmaceutical industry like the consultants. Their key issue is to establish a growth strategy of the company, enhance transparency, and manage potential harm towards stakeholders and the society and code of ethics among the various departments in the company (Kolb & Schwartz, 2009). Since the community and the pharmaceutical company are interdependent, the main purpose of the company is to maintain and adapt to the corporate social responsibility (Hellriegel, Jackson & Slocum, 2007). A good example is the risks involved when it comes to patients and drugs. An ideal management in a pharmaceutical company would consider the provision of drugs, which will help increase chances of survival instead of trying to avoid patient risk.
The second third stage of pharmaceutical stakeholders includes the regulatory institutions. Regulatory institutions are establishments that take part in ensuring the drugs that have been manufactured are of the right quality, and manufactured as per the stipulated mandate and drug manufacturing requirements (Freeman, Velamuri & Moriarty, 2006). When a drug has been developed and it meets the requirements of the relevant drug regulatory body, it obtains permit for consumption by the society. A regulatory stakeholder is of great importance especially in the society. It helps prevent the sale of medicine, which is of low quality or medicine sold by pharmaceutical companies that can be detrimental to one's health. The regulatory bodies are also responsible in promotion of manufactured drugs to the market and in the process, they help influence the company's investments and expertise. The regulatory institutions act as consultants regarding drug related issues.
The third stage of pharmaceutical stakeholder involves the marketing team in the company. Marketing pharmaceutical drugs require good advertising skills and sufficient consumer research. Employing the use of strategic marketing is appealing and attracts the end user. This method also helps in dealing with companies that produce similar drugs known as "Me-Too" drugs. Me-Too drugs have similar chemical compound to the existing drug and they perform similar action performance towards one's body. Good marketing strategy of the pharmaceutical organization will ensure the genuine drug that has been produced is sold at a fairly reasonable price and curb competition from other companies (Freeman, Velamuri & Moriarty, 2006).
Research and Development
Always on Time
Marked to Standard
Another important stakeholder in this stage is the team that takes part in research and development of a pharmaceutical drug. The biopharmaceutical research and industry paves way to discovering new and efficient drugs (Babler, 2011). Past medical research has been conducted on traditional medical outcomes and remedies then regarded as a discovery. Due to modernized biological technology, research has focused on understanding the different diseases and how they affect the human immune system. This extensive research has also led to discoveries of how to manipulate the human body in a bid to counteract the disease without damaging the cells inside one's system (Babler, 2011). Through research, development of new drugs has become possible. As stakeholders in the pharmaceutical industry, scientists who carry out biopharmaceutical research with the help of doctors, chemists and regulatory experts work together to ensure there is the successful development of a drug and it has been approved for consumption (Babler, 2011). This helps in providing a clean source of treatment to the society.
The end user is the fourth stage of pharmaceutical stakeholder ship. This includes the general public, patients, health providers, health related institutions and the government. The doctors and hospitals as the health providers ensure that approved drugs manufactured and sold by the pharmaceutical companies are put to the right use. Certain drugs like morphine are addictive and if misused, they could turn to be dangerous and lethal therefore the need to be under control. It is only the medical practitioner who is in a position to administer use of such pharmaceutical drugs.
The government has a major role to play in the pharmaceutical industry. One of its core roles is the funding of research and development of medical related devices (Babler, 2011). They help in creating incentives for smaller pharmaceutical companies so that they may come up with an independent research on new patent drugs. The government through the Food and Drug Administration is also responsible for approval of safe drugs that are effective (Williams, Gabe & Davis, 2009). The government through the congress is responsible for coming up with stringent measures regarding the manufacture of drugs and fraud related cases by pharmaceutical companies (Williams, Gabe & Davis, 2009).
The role of the industry in its economic, political and social setting
In the society, a business enterprise is the basic unit of the economy (Daft, 2011). The pharmaceutical company being a business institution produces goods for consumption and services too. These goods and services are essential for a society's well being because the drugs are used to treat various diseases that affect individuals. In the process, the company strives ahead and maximizes its profits for the company's shareholders and team members. This in turn improves the economy of the nation since the workers earn a living, the government taxes are paid and other stakeholders including the society benefit from the company. An example includes the Pfizer pharmaceutical company, one of the largest drug related companies, which is involved in offering grants and scholarships to institutional based healthcare facilities. They are also involved in scholarship programs with the neediest individuals in the society thus making them better individuals (Williams, Gabe & Davis, 2009). Over the previous years, the American pharmaceutical companies are making such tremendous milestones in terms of economic development as compared to other manufacturing related companies (National Academies Press, 2012).
When it comes to price regulation of drug in the society, the pharmaceutical company plays an important role. With the emergence of new pharmaceutical companies, the drug industry has become competitive to the extent of the existence of market power in the economy because of the production of patent drugs (Danzon, 2006). In the American health care, insurance companies have taken a major role in ensuring the American citizens get the required medical treatment at a subsidized price. This move has enabled the pharmaceutical companies to lower the prices of their drugs to suit the needs of the American economic society. In addition, the pharmaceutical companies have resulted to address the economic issues of the society through developing drugs that have the same effect as the patent drug known as "me too" and then repackaging into similar quantities but in different sachets or economic friendly containers so as to suit the financial capabilities of the majority in the society. At the same time, this move boosts the corporate sales due to the increase in market demand. Price regulation in a country affects the availability of drugs in the country as well as other countries
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In a society, there are rules and guidelines that ought to be followed for an effective and cordial relationship. These rules define the importance of what a good society ought to be. The pharmaceutical companies being part of the society have to follow the legal rules with regard to the corporate rules (Hellriegel, Jackson & Slocum, 2007).
The major role of a pharmaceutical company to the society is discovering and developing new vaccines and drugs (Babler, 2011). HIV and AIDS are a major challenge to the society, and numerous pharmaceutical companies have undertaken an indepth research of determining the cure with about two hundred different drugs and vaccines both in developing and developed nations (Williams, Gabe & Davis, 2009). Most pharmaceutical companies opt to conduct such research independently but others would try and incorporate the stakeholders. According to most of the pharmaceutical companies' vision of creating and developing quality medicines to save millions of lives and at the same time improve the global lifestyles of people, these industries have continued to expand their all time efforts in making sure the needy patients in the society receive the medicines they require (Williams, Gabe & Davis, 2009).
One corporate social responsibility the pharmaceutical company has towards the social well being is by addressing the issue of HIV and AIDS. These companies have created platforms that increase the awareness among potential victims. The companies have also ensured the ease of use and convenience of patient friendly and potent drugs, together with disease therapy acts at ensuring the well being of a society (Freeman, Velamuri & Moriarty, 2006). This move is crucial towards maintaining the corporate stakeholder relationship and trust. In the long run, the sick patient will be faithful in taking the pharmaceutical company's medication to manage the disease better and the company would have obtained its financial gains together with the patient' trust on their products.
In the drug manufacturing companies, the pharmaceutical companies are by far the majority producers of drugs and they have an expected global budget of about sixteen billion dollars (Abraham, 2002). The demand market of a pharmaceutical company is tremendously high regardless of the economy (Williams, Gabe & Davis, 2009). Each and every new day there are new cases of disease outbreaks that require urgent medical attention. The health care remains constant regardless of the changing economic conditions (Williams, Gabe & Davis, 2009). These pharmaceutical companies make a lot of money in the form of profits at the expense of the majority of the American citizens and in most cases, citizens from the third world countries. Even though the pharmaceutical companies are making tremendous steps in addressing eminent diseases, the public health interests of individuals and the commercial interests of the pharmaceutical company tend to coincide (Abraham, 2002), thus making clinical trials become hard and expensive because human rights activists have addressed this issue and many developed countries tend to avoid such participation.
In the American political scene, pharmaceutical companies do not have the mandate to distribute drugs directly to patients. They pass through the government related health care agencies (Williams, Gabe & Davis, 2009). These agencies are responsible for determining and handling the import and export regulations. These government agencies tend to have an important political factor in determining the manufacturing, production and distribution of certain companies. Since the state management is responsible for protecting and ensuring the safety of the general public's health, they have developed a system that regulates the drugs from the pharmaceutical companies (Abraham, 2002). These regulations can confirm whether the drugs produced are safe, and they meet the standards for consumption by people. In developing a drug in America, it takes six years for the drug to be tested and approved (Castner, Hayes & Shankle, 2007). After such strenuous efforts, just a few drugs that have been manufactured by the pharmaceutical companies end up being consumed by the public. This combined with the fact that it costs a lot of money for research and testing, and the fact that the FDA is in charge of setting the guidelines in accordance with the other major regulations for the manufacture of the drugs (Castner, Hayes & Shankle, 2007). Since the pharmaceutical companies want the safety and efficiency standards of the Food and Drug Administration to be high and avoid future drug related legal and medical disasters, which cause a bad reputation for the company, they strictly adhere to the rules and regulations (Abraham, 2002). In case the pharmaceutical companies' interests tend to conflict with the public health, the government agencies' role becomes very crucial. The more a pharmaceutical company influences the perception of the government agencies, the better it stands at lobbying such government agencies to act at their interests (Abraham, 2002). A number of FDA officials tend to work together with the companies in ensuring the FDA directives are not broken due and the drug companies have no queries whatsoever with such agencies. The reason for this act is because the FDA is a government agency that tends to be problematic towards adherence of the strictest health regulations of the pharmaceutical companies, and the majority of the FDA authorities started to work in the pharmaceutical company level as scientists and low-level employees. Most FDA employees would rather seek re-employment in the companies they worked for at higher career level (Abraham, 2002) because of the good monthly package and the more than appealing severance pay they get at retirement.
In the American market, pharmaceutical companies have another important role to play. When it comes to the American elections, large multinational companies seek to support one candidate to become the president so that in future, they might be of help to the company. The pharmaceutical companies tend to offer their more than generous support in the political parties with more chances of winning the elections. This in turn will ensure there is a form of gratitude from the political parties and members of the congress in terms of amending certain health care bills in the company's favor thus lobbying the congress (Williams, Gabe & Davis, 2009).
Accountability is another role the pharmaceutical companies play in terms of politics. The pharmaceutical industries have an upper hand in gaining major political influence and support with regards to drug regulation (Abraham, 2002). These companies can be able to persuade the government and drug and health care related organizations that other parties interested in the manufacture of drugs and their consumption, like the consumer based industries, the medical and scientific society can have minimal or no rights at all in the access of the FDA regulatory process (Abraham, 2002).
Domestic and international ethics
Ethics can be defined as the moral beliefs that help an individual determine what is right or wrong (Daft, 2011). In work ethics, it would be wrong if one individual makes decisions based on their perception in a bid to gain at the expense of other stakeholders. An organization incorporating a self-regulating mechanism that monitors, guides and ensures compliance of the law is one that has been built on ethical and social grounds in relation to the business model of philosophy (Daft, 2011).
Even though the pharmaceutical industry has made a tremendous progress in terms of research and the development of drugs that can treat malignant diseases like cancer, tension has emanated between the consumers and the company. Many feel that the pharmaceutical companies are not doing their social responsibility as expected. Human experimentation is an important advancement of scientific research. Clinical trials serve as a means of confirming the effectiveness of a drug as per the government health care agencies (Valverde, 2001). Even though these clinical trials are expensive, and have steep regulations to adhere to, they provide health care to the underprivileged communities. With the huge number of pharmaceutical trials being conducted, a growing number of Americans have reported that the experimental drugs have been problematic due to ethical issue, exploitation; globalization of clinical trials deems the only suitable solution. This has prompted the pharmaceutical companies to outsource from other nations especially the third world countries because of the level of ignorance, cost implications, and the fact that regulations in such nations are not as strict as those in America. According to current research, the majority of the clinical drugs tested in the developing nations forms the basic development and approval of the new patent drugs in the developed nations. These drugs are extremely expensive and it is only the citizens of wealthy nations who can access and enjoy the benefits of such health care (NBAC).
Because clinical trial in other countries has become popular with pharmaceutical companies, worldwide health organizations have come together in a bid to secure the future of the participants taking part in the clinical trial and as well to protect their human rights. The United Nations and the World Health Organization are among the international human rights agencies that have steered the campaign (Lee, 2010). The goals of these organizations are to ensure the better protection of the trial participant's health and human rights. The other goal of these organizations is to ensure that the pharmaceutical companies inform their participants about the risks and benefits that come about with the research on the new drug. The pharmaceutical company ought to inform the trial patients that as per the health care regulations, one ought to consider the health implications before venturing into such tasks, and it should be an individual's free will to participate in such research (Lee, 2010).
Ecological and natural resources
Pharmaceutical companies in a bid to conserve their environment, they have become very active and in the process, achieving very impressive results. One way is by enacting strict rules and regulations regarding the environmental conservation. Sustaining an ecological system in accordance to the plant and animal life becomes a stepping-stone in improving the environment (Berry & RondJnelli, 2000). Even though the amounts of waste produced by pharmaceutical corporations are insignificant as compared to the other multinational corporations, they still play an important role in environmental stewardship (Berry & RondJnelli, 2000). With an organization's growth, there comes the need to deal with certain environmental concerns including soil and water pollution. This helps in conserving the ecology from contamination and extinction. Global warming has caused so many problems because of pollution and as per the Environmental agencies' directives, numerous pharmaceutical companies have introduced new and clean manufacturing processes that reduce waste production and minimize the negative ecological impact.
Taking a look into the pharmaceutical companies, they consist of other subsidiary businesses that are involved in manufacturing, processing and formulating the medicinal chemicals in pharmaceutical products that can be consumed readily. The process of converting the botanical products into powder form and the formulating them into capsules, suspension or ointments can be very risky to the environment. Another thing about pharmaceutical companies is that they tend to focus on two major areas of human research that is in vitro and in vivo (Berry & RondJnelli, 2000). The pharmaceutical products that are produced include vaccines, human and animal blood derivatives, blood plasma, and the toxoids (Berry & RondJnelli, 2000). The process of manufacturing such products in this sector of research tends to be dangerous because of the radioactive, biological and chemical wastes they produce, which have adverse environmental impacts (Berry & RondJnelli, 2000). According to research carried out by the multinational health care corporations, quite a number of these organizations have realized that their company facilities can cause environmental pollution and be detrimental to the safety and health of their primary stakeholders (Berry & RondJnelli, 2000). An environment that has been polluted by commercial activities can lower the quality of life in such areas the organization is located and being a fortune five hundred company, they tend to suffer a lot of financial losses in the process.
Adopting the Environmental Management Systems, EMS is the other way the pharmaceutical companies have taken an integral part in safeguarding the natural and ecological resources. These management systems comply with the International Organization for Standardization's (ISO) 14000 guide that advocates the reduction of waste products and the negative environmental degradation by a pharmaceutical company as a result of the processes related to manufacturing and production (Berry & RondJnelli, 2000). The fundamental elements of an ISO 14000 Environmental Management Systems are;
â€¢ To define the available public policies regarding management of the environment,
â€¢ An organization's well-defined assignment towards management of the environment,
â€¢ Management programs addressing a business and its relation to the environment in the company's performance plans,
â€¢ Process of reviewing the management in order to have a continuous environmental performance and improvement, and
â€¢ Programs that ease the work of measuring, assessing auditing, and reporting the performance results of environmental management.
As a result of creating awareness and improving the global standards, there was a need for the regulatory boards concerned with the pharmaceutical companies to come together and standardize the safety regulations and quality associated with consumers so as to provide safe and quality products efficiently (Castner, Hayes & Shankle, 2007). Different nations came together under their various health care organizations to form standardized health care measures especially in addressing pharmaceutical companies and their role in production of drugs. The International Conference on Harmonization, ICH was a body created by several nations in order to represent the regulatory organizations and industries that deal with carrying out research (Castner, Hayes & Shankle, 2007).
The pharmaceutical companies while addressing the emerging global issues are trying to attempt their participation in the business industry by coming up with standards that ensure the safety of the product. The majority of these organizations are addressing incumbent social norms towards attaining a sustainable society. This boosts their trust among the society further in addition to being successful companies in the past (Castner, Hayes & Shankle, 2007).
Rating pharmaceutical companies relating to Social issues
While rating the pharmaceutical companies, I think they are in a better position to achieve more in creating awareness and improving global standards. Numerous nations are ignorant about the new rules and regulations surrounding health care. Instead of pharmaceutical companies taking advantage of them like the way a majority of such companies are doing, they ought to educate them and make them conversant about the current societal activities and enlighten such communities about the guidelines of conducting clinical tests. Pharmaceutical companies should form partnerships with government agencies in the developing world to come up with strategies of involving them not only as lab rats but as important stakeholders in the process of developing medicinal drugs at the least environmental degradation.
Pharmaceutical companies' overall performance in accordance with the core values of Saint Leo University
Saint Leo University is a Catholic University, and it upholds high levels of integrity in terms of achieving their core values and objectives. The pharmaceutical companies ought to emulate the values set aside in attainment of the stipulated code of ethics in the workplace. In my opinion, pharmaceutical companies have strived greatly in achieving the same core values like Saint Leo University.
â€¢ Excellence: In terms of excellence, pharmaceutical companies have made a tremendous milestone in the discovery of drugs that can help in curing diseases especially the malignant diseases like cancer, and HIV and AIDS.
â€¢ Community: Pharmaceutical companies have strived hard to ensure there is interdependence between the company and its stakeholders while progressing to making medical discoveries. They encourage the spirit of belonging among their staff members and the society.
â€¢ Respect: By respecting the environment, the pharmaceutical companies have attained the admiration and trust by the society. In helping conserve the environment, the companies have helped to solve a huge menace to the society.
â€¢ Responsible stewardship: Stewardship is the act of adopting something and owning it. The bid by pharmaceutical companies in owning their society and conserving it ensures they have maximum optimization of the available resources but at minimal environmental and resource depletion.
â€¢ Integrity: Pharmaceutical companies have created trust and honesty among the company stakeholders and shareholders. Being transparent in the financial objectives has been a stepping stone in accomplishing its goals and responsibilities. Building company- societal trust ensures integrity too.