A team of experts was selected to put forward a long-term strategic plan covering the six years between 2015 – 2020 in order to achieve a number of core goals and objectives governed by the markets’ analysis and the company’s dynamics. Such insights may be demonstrated in terms of assuring Pharmacare’s distinctive image as a Palestinian pharmaceutical factory producing top quality products distributed locally and exported internationally. Pharmacare aims towards distinction on an international scale by means of producing quality products for highly affordable and competitive prices. Such a strategy, alongside a professional recruitment of its valued asset of manpower and a solid scheme towards sustainability, pour into the well of aspirations assumed by Pharmacare with regards to its 2020 visions. The aforementioned team compiled former studies presented to build the current scaffold based on judicial, financial, economic, social and governance standards.
As a result, the following nine objectives were set for the 2020 strategic plan:
- Increasing production outputs while developing facilities and maintaining quality production to accommodate market needs and the continuously upgraded stringent international standards:
To increase outputs while constantly insuring full implementation of the stringent international standards, current facilities were upgraded and new cutting edge technologies were introduced, thus giving rise to a whole new era of production that introduces new lines into the market. Acquiring new technologies, promoting a new generation of business and the continued investments in HR and the technically trained professionals, permitted the doubling of production outputs and paved the way towards the required strict compliance to good practice terms; hence, playing a significant role in reflecting positively on the company’s credentials.
- Aspiring towards leadership in pharmaceutical manufacturing to secure drug security and help assure the welfare for the various socio-economic sectors within the Palestinian community; in accordance with the principle adopted by Pharmacare ‘’providing high quality medicines for affordable prices’’.
The Palestinian Ministry of Health has put together a list of essential drugs comprising medications that the ministry aspires to continuously provide to needy patients at high quality and affordable costs. Those products go up to 529 products, of which 476 are generic (88%) and 175 of those are locally manufactured (37%). Pharmacare’s strategic plan attempts to broaden the range of its currently manufactured products to include specialty products purchased by the MOH from international manufacturers. This allows Pharmacare to provide better rates for a larger portion of currently imported drugs which are in high demand. In this regard, Pharmacare will attempt to produce 3-5 new products every year to meet the MOH and local market needs.
- Contributing to the Palestinian economy by means of exporting drugs and medications to international strategic markets:
The Palestinian private sector is currently urged to play a fundamental role trying to alleviate the on-going economic crisis. This may be achieved through enhancing exports and increasing employment, in particular among the educated young generation. Pharmacare plans to play a leading role in addressing this economic crisis by means of increasing production outputs and creating much needed job opportunities. The strategy of expanding to a new production facility annex and new offices as well as establishing new international markets will increase earnings as well as the number of vacancies in the company; thus, help alleviate the severity of the current unemployment crisis.
- Maintaining investments in quality while sustaining current international certifications and acquiring new ones:
From inception, Pharmacare aspired to produce quality products, thus distinguishing itself amongst its counterparts amid a series of stringent audits. Such distinction has led to various prestigious awards, amongst which are the EU-GMP, awarded by the German Ministry of Health in 2008, renewed in 2011 and 2014; the renewal in 2017 of the EU-GMP certificate from the Portuguese Ministry of Health; the Palestinian GMP, from 2008 onwards; the Brazilian ANVISA, several ISOs and other honours and certificates. Pharmacare plans to carry on alongside the same route, thereby assuring all clientele of its quality and dedication securing increased levels of local and international business and further opening new opportunities.
- Investing in R&D, formulating new generics, researching novel medications that utilise indigenous resources and developing partnerships with research and academic institutes:
Pharmacare continues to collaborate with a number of key research centres and universities in the region as it believes that the role of higher education institutes is not limited to the production of knowledge, but also to utilize novel outputs, particularly those of pharmaceutical research, in practical applications in the various productive industrial sectors. Pharmacare carries on to put much efforts into developing innovative products through original research and to improve on existing products.
- Improving skills of the company’s employees at different levels and enhancing their productivity and efficiency:
Pharmacare continues to attract, recruit and retain some of the best technical and administrative professionals in Palestine and the region. To assure top standard performance, it continually habilitates its present and prospective manpower through high level relevant training. This further adds to a successful formula of bringing about a generation of well-trained professionals capable of tackling potential challenges. Such resources continue to contribute to Pharmacare’s illustrious and solid position in the market as a Quality producer.
- Contributing directly to creating job opportunities for the educated youth and new graduates with strong scientific background.
The increased revenues expected from doubling production outputs and the new products introduced will necessitate the recruitment of educated technical and scientific professionals. As a total, employment within the Pharmacare Group is expected to grow 50% by 2020.
- Improving the work environment within the company as well as motivating workers and employees:
Since inception, Pharmacare has invested great efforts to develop the capabilities and qualifications and of its workforce and endeavoured to sustain employee engagement and encourage their belonging and thus their loyalty to Pharmacare. This was made possible by instilling in the workplace a “family” atmosphere in which not only ‘work’ matters, but also each individual and his needs. Upgrading of skills is done through specialised training as well through the numerous scholarships that were offered to those employees wishing to peruse degrees in local universities in fields relevant to Pharmacare.
Employees’ benefits far exceed what the labour laws stipulate. Reduced working hours, better conditions for severance pay, interest free loans given in special circumstances, dormitories in which workers residing in remote towns may temporarily dwell and a monthly stipend paid for families of deceased employees if left without a bread winner are few examples. Finally, performance bonuses are paid monthly, quarterly or annually to the company’s workforce. Thus, if the company is moving forward, all feel the benefit.
- Contributing to Sustainability and Corporate Social Responsibility:
Through the implementation of the 2020 strategic plan, Pharmacare aspires to ensure that its environmental policies and its social responsibility practice are in line with community needs. The company has, therefore, decided to afforest the surround of the factory, to follow a saving-mode routine in electrical consumption and to resolve any prevailing noise pollution within the area. This comes in addition to existing environment conservation methods, such as the disposal of industrial waste in environment-friendly techniques. Pharmacare, further, secures several annual scholarships for outstanding students in Palestinian universities. Scholarships are awarded to those seeking postgraduate studies within disciplines particularly related to the work direction of the company. Additionally, the R&D department strengthened bonds with local universities and research centres in aim of setting up research collaborations, pioneer an enhanced product quality and to research potential indigenous materials to produce a novel range of new drugs and pharmaceuticals.
Finally, the company is paving the way towards stronger relations with the Ministry of Health and the local universities’ faculties of pharmacy and chemistry through providing an array of internships, offering training and awareness sessions, as well as offering professional modules to university students within technical and managerial areas in relation to the pharmaceutical sector.