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Partner summit scales new heights in global healthcare

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Following on the success of the first Novartis Partner Summit in 2015, Novartis South Africa was pleased to host the second Partner Summit at their Headquarters in Waterfall, Midrand this week. A world leader in healthcare, Novartis operates in 140 countries including South Africa. The Company is intent upon discovering novel ways to treat disease, improve health and extend people’s lives using science-based innovation.


Thomas Kowallik
Thandiswa Ngcungcu
Dr Nadia Carstens
The Partner Summit was initiated with the purpose of encouraging dialogue between key role players in South African healthcare. Delegates included Novartis associates and partners in the pharmaceutical industry, healthcare professionals, government officials and members of the media.


Thomas Kowallik, Novartis South Africa CEO elaborates: “Globally, Novartis has always pursued the idea of science without borders; of sharing knowledge and technological breakthroughs to diverse patient populations, of encouraging communication across all influence spheres and of positively changing the face of medicine for people globally.  The Partner Summit is an excellent platform from which to nurture this global relationship and to bring about change to healthcare in Africa.” Kowallik bade Summit attendees a warm welcome, and introduced this year’s Summit theme, being ‘Education Partnering for a Science-Based Industry’.


In tying with the theme, much attention was given to the Next Generation Scientist Programme, a state-of-the-art science and mentorship programme run by Novartis in conjunction with the University of Basel, Switzerland. The programme aims to elevate scientific and leadership capability in emerging countries by inviting carefully selected scientists from these countries to participate in an intensive three-month internship in Switzerland. The interns work on research projects and participate in a leadership development program during this time. Feedback has been immensely positive, and Summit delegates were treated to PhD candidate Thandiswa Ngcungcu’s first-hand account of her experience in the Programme.


Medical scientist Dr Nadia Carstens shared her passion for research into human genetics with the audience. Carstens is of the firm opinion that African researchers should champion research on African populations, and that programmes such as the Next Generation Scientist Programme go a long way to achieving that goal. 


Novartis Head of Global Scientific Capabilities CoE Colin Pillai gave attendees further insight into the Next Generation Scientist Programme, and elaborated on its goals. A lively panel discussion with Pillai and NGS interns was facilitated by the vivacious Devi Govender, well-known for her outspoken role as Carte Blanche co-presenter.


Another keynote speaker was independent strategist and facilitator Chantell Ilbury. Ilbury is also the co-author of the best-seller, The Mind of a Fox, written alongside Clem Sunter.


Radio DJ and TV Presenter Mark Pilgrim gave Summit delegates an interesting viewpoint into the value of communication and healthcare collaboration from a patient’s perspective.


Colin Pillai Chantell Ilbury Mark Pilgrim
Novartis South Africa is pleased to play a hands-on role in making a difference in the South African healthcare landscape, and urges other pharmaceutical companies and industry bodies to do the same. It is extremely gratifying to know that the Company is tangibly embracing its mission: ‘We are Novartis and we are re-imagining medicine.’


For further information visit http://www.novartis.co.za/

Posted on Wednesday, November 30 @ 13:12:37 SAST by E-Doc
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