APCO Worldwide and its research consultancy APCO Insight released its "State of the U.S. Biopharmaceutical Industry 2014". The report evaluates the industry's relationships, or "Return on Reputation (ROR)"—a metric developed by the firm—with key industry stakeholders.
In a release, APCO wrote: "The biopharmaceutical industry in the United States continues to have a positive reputation among key stakeholders, and there are opportunities for the industry to build upon their role as leaders on critical health care issues by going beyond stakeholders' expectations," said Chrystine Zacherau, senior director of health care research at APCO Insight. "In particular, stakeholders express a desire to see the industry play a larger role in working to address pressing, long-term public health issues and exceed expectations in the areas of sustainable innovation and disease awareness."
"This has been a pivotal time for the biopharmaceutical industry and greater health care industry in the United States," said Stig Albinus, global leader of APCO's health care practice. "The biopharmaceutical industry has stepped up to meet stakeholders' expectations over the past two years by being responsive to their concerns and working responsibly to improve health care. With the ROR Indicator, we can show senior communication and business leaders in the industry how they can continue to meet and exceed these expectations by better communicating about their innovative products and solutions to address some of society's long-term public health problems."
As previously reported by Medical Marketing & Media Online, the report found that the industry's score was relatively stable among most stakeholders, but cautioned of a trending decline among policy leaders. The group also raised concerns about responsible marketing, especially to physicians.
Researchers found a modest decrease, which it did not attribute any statistical significance to, in the group's "reputation index score" for HCPs and opinion leaders, as well as a slight tumble in the overall reputation index score from 61.3 in 2012 to 60.5 in 2013.
APCO Insight defines reputation index as a "reliable measure of the industry's overall reputation that takes into account" a number of factors including 54 "stakeholder-defined attributes," such as sustainable innovation, pharmacovigiliance, chronic disease management and patient assistance.
It also states that a "one-point increase" in "reputation index translates into," a .13% increase in market cap, 1.1% increase in sales for the average biopharma company and an increase of more than 550,000 patients who are likely to ask their doctor about a company's medicine, among others.
It was also noted that "concerns about responsible marketing persist—especially marketing to physicians—and elevate the importance of Responsible Business Operations." Given the recent widespread allegations of bribery by GSK in China, these concerns should come as little surprise.