Paulina Escobedo
Director General
B. Braun Medical
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View from the Top

Integration Serices for Complete Therapeutic Solutions

Wed, 09/09/2015 - 14:43

Q: B. Braun Medical came to Mexico in 2011. How has the company evolved since then?

A: B. Braun Medical has had an interesting journey in Mexico and we have consistently reached our development targets in terms of sales growth and revenue. The Mexican market is highly complex for us as we are competing with companies that have been in Mexico for many years, and it has been challenging to position ourselves as leaders to bring innovation to the market. B. Braun Group in Mexico is determined to grow 20% yearly in Mexico. The two divisions that represent B. Braun Medical (Hospital Care and Out Patient Market) constitute 65% of sales globally, so we expect to localize this trend by the year 2020, with revenue over US$61 million. B. Braun Medical has the strategic vision to incorporate itself into the Mexican market by improving quality of care. A potential obstacle to meeting this goal is the lack of certifications and unification of practices between different hospitals and outpatient care settings. In September 2012 the publication of the Official Mexican Norm 022 that defines the Conditions for the Administration of Infusion Therapy created the opportunity for discourse. Hospitals are now incorporating these good practices and acquiring certifications. We are helping hospitals through these processes as it is extremely important for end users in hospitals to be well informed and up-to-date about medical practices.

Q: What therapeutic areas does B. Braun Medical see as most important in Mexico?

A: B. Braun Medical works in both medical devices and pharmaceuticals. We are in the unique position of supplying complete therapeutic services related to each medical device, including equipment, disposables, and medications necessary to obtain the best outcomes for patients, providing an integrated service as manufacturers. B. Braun Medical is currently focused on two therapeutic areas: one being infusion therapy and the other pain therapy. Statistics show that 90-95% of patients that visit hospitals require some type of IV treatment, so it is extremely important to develop protocols both for general situations and for specific problems faced by individual patients. In terms of pain therapy, we are global leaders in regional anesthesia and we provide medical assessment on the best products for specific problems.

Q: Who are your main clients?

A: Currently, 80% of our clients come from the public sector and 20% from the private sector. Our target is to increase our strength in the private sector and we are in a strategically effective position to meet that goal. Hospitals in the public sector generally use integrators to provide complementary services from several different institutions but since we are manufacturers of both devices and pharmaceuticals we have the unique advantage of offering complete packages for comprehensive medical treatment.

Q: How did you collaborate with DHL to come up with the most appropriate model for your logistics center?

A: Logistics services are an extremely important part of our strategy. While we generally prefer to interact directly with our clients, in cases where we are unable to do so, we look for partners with common interests that are able to provide quality services for the end user. DHL offers a specialized service for pharmaceuticals, called PharmaShare, which has proven to be innovative, efficient, and safe. An important challenge for a medical device company is prompt delivery of products to hospitals in emergency situations, which is easier to achieve using third-party logistics as we can control delivery times at reasonable costs. DHL fully complies with the regulatory requirements of COFEPRIS and private hospitals and after having worked with them since October 2014, this collaboration has allowed us to reduce logistics costs by 20%.

Q: Devices approval can take up to four years – how do you tackle this challenge?

A: We have discovered that integrating services has accelerated approval times. COFEPRIS is currently taking into account the relevance innovation has for devices, and while this has proven complex approval times are being reducing. We are working together to bring innovation into the country. Collaboration begins with the preparation of dossiers to import new devices. It is necessary to provide complete and detailed documentation at every step of the way for all the devices that we bring into Mexico. We also create market access departments. We are trying to bring international experience to the country and apply it to solve national problems, and we are building foundations to support the launch of good technology in Mexico.