New Year's Honours List sees CEO of GSK knighted
The work of Andrew Witty, the Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of British pharmaceutical company GlaxoSmithKline (GSK) has been formally recognised in the 2012 New Year’s Honours List.
Witty has been awarded with a Knighthood in commendation for his work not only towards GSK as a company, but also to the UK pharmaceutical industry as a whole and the British economy.
Despite only being in his current role as CEO of GSK since May 2008, Witty’s career with the company spans 25 years and has seen him take on a variety of roles, including the President and Vice-President of European and Asia-Pacific operations respectively.
Aged just 47, Witty has also been credited with being one of the youngest recipients of the honours this year.
To read the latest edition of Healthcare Global, click here
- Sperm grown in laboratory in fertility breakthrough
- TempMark8 shows the importance of temperature monitoring
- Top 10 Expiring drug patents
Witty is tremendously supportive of GSK’s promise to provide affordable drugs and medications to low income countries and poorer global communities, as a result offering better and bigger price discounts to those who need it most.
In addition to this, he is particularly supportive of research and development into new and affordable vaccines and treatments for malaria.
During 2011 GSK saw third-quarter sales increase by six percent under Witty’s leadership.
Alongside his responsibilities as company CEO Witty is also a member of the UK Prime Minister David Cameron’s business advisory group.
Elsewhere in the New Year’s Honours List, the former director-general of the Association of the British Pharmaceutical Industry (ABPI) was awarded with an OBE.
Despite stepping down from the post in June last year, Richard Barker was made an Officer of the Order of the British Empire (OBE) for the contributions he made to the pharmaceutical sector in the UK.
Furthermore, John Buchanan also received a Knighthood in recognition for his work as the chairman of Smith & Nephew, a medical devices company.
The most recent New Year’s Honours List also noted the work of ‘local heroes’ in the healthcare industry alongside industry leaders.
Christine Mills, the woman responsible for the introduction of the UK’s first mobile chemotherapy unit and founder of cancer charity Hope for Tomorrow was honoured with an MBE.
Another MBE was given to the brains behind a transport service that takes vulnerable patients to vital healthcare appointments in the English county of Essex – Stock Cares founder Terence Monaghan.
Other OBEs, MBEs and Knighthoods also went to a variety of local GP’s, doctors and medicine and health academics.
Our magazine is now available on the iPad. Click here to download it.
Dexcom: changing the lives of people with type 1 diabetes
It is estimated that 9.3% of adults around the world are living with type 1 diabetes, which amounts to a total of 463 million people. A further 1.1 million children and adolescents under the age of 20 are living with the condition.
Unlike the more prevalent type 2 diabetes, where the body still produces insulin and symptoms develop slowly, people with type 1 diabetes need regular insulin injections or pumps, and must monitor their sugar levels frequently.
In recent years a number of remote glucose monitoring systems have become available that patients can use at home. These work with a sensor, usually placed under the skin, that measures glucose levels every few minutes. This information is then transmitted wirelessly to a device like a smartphone or tablet, which can then be shared with their clinician.
British actress Nina Wadia's son Aidan, 14, has type 1 diabetes, and has been managing his condition using Dexcom, a glucose monitoring system used by patients all over the world. Here Wadia explains how Dexcom has improved their lives.
As a parent of someone with type 1 diabetes, what is your day-to-day life like?
Being able to take a breath, think and pivot constantly without getting frustrated becomes an essential mindset because sometimes it feels like each day is determined to be different from the day before. Whatever worked yesterday is going to misfire today.
Which areas of yours and Aidan’s life are most impacted by diabetes?
The one thing that you have to fight hard to reclaim is spontaneity, especially when it comes to food and exercise. It’s only when this is taken do you realise how essential each one is. You can be flexible and there are no real limits, but only in the sense that a great athlete can be flexible without limits because they’ve trained super hard to be that way. So we’ve all had to become athletes when it comes to being spontaneous.
How has Dexcom helped you and Aidan?
Dexcom has brought future science fiction to real life today. The continuous glucose monitoring system is tiny, sits discreetly on his body and gives him a ten-day breather between sensor changes, so it's goodbye finger-pricking seven times daily.
Dexcom is totally active at a grass roots level and for Diabetes Awareness has pledged to donate £2,000 if #DexcomDiabetesStories and/or #DexcomWarriorStories is shared 200 times! I’ll be sharing more on social media and would love to hear how other families are winning their fights.
Maybe most importantly Dexcom is trying to introduce a reimbursement programme for type 1 diabetes patients which will give greater access to modern, life changing hi-tech. I want to spread the word on the importance of accessing it through this campaign.
If you compared your life today with how it was before Aidan was using Dexcom, what has changed?
It's always working, which lets him take his mind off diabetes for longer stretches. It also lets me get off his back. We both receive alerts so I no longer have to pester him by asking him what his number is, and especially importantly, I don’t have to wake him at night to prick his finger if I’m worried. Dexcom gave us back our sleep!