Interview with Elena Kartasheva, President of Takeda Russia
Published on 7 December 2020 by Anna Andriyanova
Adam Smith Conferences: Elena, can you please give your opinion about the situation on the pharmaceutical market in connection with the pandemic? What issues are of greatest relevance now?
Elena Kartasheva: This year, the whole world is following the changes in the pharmaceutical market amid the COVID-19 pandemic: leading international and Russian pharmaceutical companies are pooling their efforts to develop the most effective therapies for the new coronavirus infection. In this situation, it is very important to find a balance between issues requiring an immediate response and long-term goals, such as providing innovative therapy and medical care for patients with life-threatening and rare diseases, the relevance of which is still great.
Adam Smith Conferences: What can market members do to increase patients’ access to innovative drugs?
Elena Kartasheva: Over the past few years, Russia has made great progress in this direction. We do hope that programs such as "14 high-cost nosologies", the transfer of funding for the procurement of innovative drugs from the regional to the federal level and the creation of a fund for the treatment of children with orphan diseases will be further developed and all patients will be provided with the therapy they are in need of.
As a patient-centric pharmaceutical company, we are committed to contributing to an increased access to innovative therapies, and in 2020, we have completed the transfer of the manufacture of Ixazomib, an innovative orphan drug for the treatment of patients with multiple myeloma, to the company's manufacturing site in Yaroslavl. The created manufacturing facilities will satisfy the need of Russia and the EAEU states for this drug, and its inclusion in the "14 high-cost nosologies" program will help even more patients receive the high-tech treatment they need.
Adam Smith Conferences: What other patient-focused projects does your company implement?
Elena Kartasheva: Our company implements a wide range of patient support programs. For instance, early access programs, thanks to which patients gain access to innovative technologies even before they are approved for marketing in Russia. Thus, as part of lung cancer and short bowel syndrome therapy programs, dozens of Russian patients received innovative Takeda drugs in 2020.
Our company places a high emphasis on prevention of serious complications in patients with rare diseases, since thanks to modern complex therapies, some patients can resume their normal life without the fear of aggravation of their disease. For instance, preventive replacement therapy in the treatment of patients with severe hemophilia A and B can reduce the number of sudden bleedings, and with an individually selected dosage regimen, achieve total absence of the above, which helps prevent the occurrence or progression of hemophilic arthropathy. As part of the increased access program for patients with rare diseases, we have set up the manufacture of a drug in Russia, which is very widely used in the international and Russian practice of treating patients with hemophilia A.
Adam Smith Conferences: What factors, in your opinion, contribute to an increase in the efficacy of therapies for patients with rare diseases?
Elena Kartasheva: First and foremost, I would like to note the importance of an integrated approach to social care and medical care management for patients with rare diseases. An integrated approach has a positive effect on the efficacy of therapies and will increase patients’ expectancy and quality of life. I am confident that by joint efforts we will be able to increase access to early diagnostics, a wide range of rehabilitation and preventive measures, social and psychological assistance that the patients with rare diseases in this country, including the most remote regions of Russia, need so desperately.