Glaxo Takes Steps to Polish Image

Glaxo takes steps to polish image [The News & Observer, Raleigh, N.C.]


From News & Observer (Raleigh, NC) (January 26, 2011)


Jan. 26--GlaxoSmithKline wants to improve its image.

The drug maker is working harder to operate with integrity and transparency, said Deirdre Connelly, president of North American Pharmaceuticals, in a speech at a Washington conference Monday.

"In some ways our industry lost its way and failed to fully appreciate the evolving expectations of our stakeholders," Connelly said, according to prepared remarks GSK made available.

"Some of it is because industry bashing is good politics. Some of it is because we still make mistakes," she said. "No matter the reasons, at the end of the day, we must regain the public’s trust in our industry."

GSK has been tarnished recently by a series of problems, including controversy over its diabetes drug Avandia, a scathing "60 Minutes" report and a $750 million settlement related to mistakes at a factory in Puerto Rico, and government investigations into its marketing and manufacturing practices.

To make amends with consumers and regulators, GSK has voluntarily reported payments it makes to doctors for speaking and consulting, eliminated bonuses for sales representatives, and increased ethics training for employees, Connelly said. GSK also has added compliance staff and set up new ways for employees to report problems.

Connelly is the British drug maker’s top official at its North American headquarters in Research Triangle Park, where it employs about 5,000 people.

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Posted: January 2011


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