Rebeca Madrid
Corporate Commercial Director
Medix Pharma
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View from the Top

Promoting Diagnosis Through Free Treatment

Wed, 09/07/2016 - 16:23

Q: How has Medix Pharma’s business model changed with the surge of different treatment options, such as low-cost pharmacies with free medical consults?

A: In the past we had a very traditional business model. Our sales representatives would go into a doctor’s office and offer our product. But pharmacies with free medical offices generated an interesting change for the pharmaceutical industry. This new model was initiated by generic drug pharmacies that notified patients looking for treatment.

We started in public squares offering people the opportunity to know their weight, their glucose index and the possible risks they could face if they were overweight. The idea was to present the solution to a problem many people did not think they had.

Q: How have you managed to create a successful product portfolio in relation to your competitors?

A: We are specialized in overweight and obese conditions. We have a very broad portfolio with more than 13 alternatives that can be customized and can work together to create integral, personalized solutions for our patients. We are expanding our product ranges due to the change in patient needs. We are seeing complications from obesity we did not see in the past, such as venous insufficiency, spine and knee pain. Despite the need to grow our portfolio, we are not introducing OTC medication, we are not overriding doctors.

Among all the products we offer, we have two very successful products. Oblecox® and Redotex® are our best positioned products, especially the latter. The success and service portfolio, further improving our position as differentiated solution providers. Through the International Division, Medix is expanding its integral solutions to countries in the Latin American region. We have detected a lack of specialized companies with enough history behind them and as a result we will continue to increase our presence in the region. Dominican Republic, Brazil, Paraguay, Argentina and Ecuador are among the markets where Medix has a strong footprint.

Q: Mexico suffers from the highest obesity margins in the world. How can it improve?

A: Both overweight and obese conditions are complex issues that deeply impact the health of society. They require specialized and individualized solutions, contrary to common belief. Even though it may increase the intricacy of our treatments, it also adds effectiveness. The biggest misconception surrounding this type of condition is that through diet and exercise everything can be fixed. Psychological and genetic propensities, labor requirements, cultural and family issues should be taken into account by our health specialists.

Q: What are Medix’s distribution channels that are helping it achieve 47 percent market share? of Redotex® can be explained by its efficiency in helping people lose weight.

Q: Why would you say that obesity’s rates have tripled in the past 10 years, making Mexico the leading country in weight-related problems?

A: The Mexican population’s lifestyle has played an important role in obesity rates. Physical inactivity is more common than it used to be. I think that children’s obesity is related to crime problems. If a city has a high crime index parents will not allow children to go out and play and they will spend more hours sitting in front of a screen. Obesity problems are also due to purchasing power. Attending a health club is very expensive so physical activity is becoming a luxury. It is also important to consider our eating habits. Our high sugar consumption is generating increases in diabetes rates.

As a country, we still have a lot to learn in terms of obesity and poverty. Twelve percent of the population living below the poverty line also suffers from weight-related problems. Reaching this sector is a problem we have not been able to solve. An interesting possibility for treatment that needs to be explored is to create alliances between pharmaceuticals and government, committing both to cover a percentage of

A: Besides common distribution to pharmacy stores and communication with general doctors, we have opened other distribution channels. For instance, Medix evaluates and develops health programs with partnering companies, helping its employees reach their desired weight. Medix also opened a Consumer Division, focusing on aesthetic and overweight issues, rather than in obesity. We want to tackle the problem before it escalates and our Consumer Division offers that opportunity. Ten years ago, Medix was the fifth largest pharmaceutical manufacturer of overweight and obesity products. Placing these ailments as the company’s core business gave way to its current market share, coupled with its integral business model. We have the largest portfolio of differentiated products for these types of ailments, adding effectiveness to our treatments.

Q: How is Medix helping the industry create a preventive culture against obesity and overweight?

A: Educating physicians and patients is the first step. Unfortunately, not enough attention is given the preventive scope of obesity, as academic institutions are more focused on healing and remediation once the disease presents itself. Medix offers training programs through its collaboration with the Latin American Institute against obesity and overweight. the costs of obesity treatments for people with economic shortcomings.

If we expect to solve the obesity crisis, we need to increase awareness and prevention campaigns. The Crusade is a program focused on diagnosing employees from private and public enterprises for free. We conduct our diagnosis and we present the company with a general panorama of their employees’ health and a working plan so we can help them to achieve an ideal health goal. We have worked with more than 800 companies. The Crusade helps our obesity research and we are able to compile data from different people in different places to better understand the psychological, metabolic, genetic and behavioral problems that lead to obesity.

Q: What joint efforts is Medix Pharma pursuing with the government to work on the obesity crisis?

A: Mexico City’s government is our partner but Medix Pharma is expanding its alliances with several local governments for medical training. We are investing in equipment donations for obesity-specialized clinics and prevention campaigns. We promote the benefits of having a healthy lifestyle at government operated clinics and when there are government-organized sports events we attend them with our medical units to diagnose people for free.