Rated Ranking: Access to Medicine Index 2014

Access to Medicine Index 2014


Being published for the 4th time this year the Access to Medicine Index has evolved to one of the most influential rankings for CSR activities of the pharmaceutical industry. Of course one could argue that this ranking is of limited relevance given that it covers only one aspect of one field of one industry. But given the growing relevance the ATM Index could have on a pharmaceutical company’s reputation among several stakeholder groups it can hardly be overestimated. The ATM results are not only published in media worldwide, they are also read (and employed) e.g. by analysts, governmental and non-governmental officials.
Its relevance results from a solid and broadly based methodology. The methodology is published in a some 70-pages booklet before analytical work starts. ATM uses a framework of four pillars – Commitments, Transparency, Performance, and Innovation – and seven so called technical dimensions: General Access to Medicines Management, Public Policy & Market Influence, Research & Development, Pricing, Manufacturing & Distribution, Patents & Licensing, Capability Advancement, Product Development & Distribution and Product Donations & Philanthropic Activities. All together they sum up for 95 criteria. Many of them demand for qualitative analysis based on information published by the respective companies and other organizations. This naturally leaves room for interpretation and consequently for discussion. On the other hand the broad and transparent stakeholder process, including the companies itself, and the obvious willingness of the makers to improve their methodology, is definitely solid and state of the art. The research covers 46 diseases and 106 countries based and compiled on World Bank and UN data. This year the ATM team added some countries e.g. Brazil and Columbia that show considerable inequality in development. The research universe used to cover the Top 20 research based pharma giants and comprises research-based companies only. This year it consisted initially of 21 companies as Abbott and its spin-off AbbVie were both in the field. But in the result list only AbbVie shows up.
The ATM Index 2014 shows GlaxoSmithKline (GSK) as #1, same as in 2012. Runner-up is Novo Nordisk jumping up from position 6. AbbVie shows up on position 9 which is better than Abbots position 13 in the ranking two years ago. It is interesting to see that three Japanese companies – Astellas, Daiichi Sankyo and Takeda – are at the bottom of the table , while another Japanese company – Eisai – has managed to stick out of the pack (#11 out of 20). It might be interesting to further investigate to which degree this is related to branding and reputation challenges that Japanese-based companies face.
The spread of the results – consisting of an index score from 0 (lowest) to 5 (best) which – declined a little but still reaches from 3.29 for GSK to Takeda with 1.45. Compared to 2012 GSK’s score is lower (from 3.8 to 3.29) and the scores of the lowest ranked companies jumped over the 1.0 value. While it seems not possible to compare the scores of 2012 and 2014 as there were slight changes in the criteria it is possible to conclude that the gap between the top and least ranked company decreased.
Of course ATM covers only a small part of the CSR activities of pharmaceutical companies. But it is a showcase of solid methodology with a considerable stakeholder involvement process attached – and it has growing influence among stakeholders and respectively on pharmaceutical corporations reputation. That’s why we see this ranking as highly valuable with significant insights, and therefore you will find this ranking among the top of our own Rated Rankings. The ATM website can be accessed here.
Relevance / Impact
– 13 points –
Added Value / Insights
– 13 points –

Trustworthiness / Intention
– 15 points –
– 13 points –

Aggregated points
– 54 (out of 60) –
Highly valuable ranking

Useful ranking with some flaws

Partially useful ranking with considerable flaws

< 30
Useless ranking

Reach of publication:

  • Global, e.g. North America, Europe and Asia (5 points)
  • Regional, e.g. Europe or North America (3 points)
  • Large national market: e.g. US, China, Japan, Germany, France, UK, Italy, Brazil (2 points)
  • Mid-sized or small market, e.g. Switzerland, Netherlands, Argentina, Singapore (1 point)

Ranking will be recognized by key stakeholders:

  • Opinion Leaders (Politicians, Professors; NGO’s) (2 points)
  • Business Advisory Board, C-Level Executives (CEO, CCO, CFO, CMO) (2 points)
  • High Potentials & Top Talents (employer market, students) (2 points)
  • Financial Market (2 points)
  • General Public (2 points)

Aggregated points: 13 (of max. 15)

Is the owner providing the ranking a credible and trustworthy organization?

  • Ranking owner has limited credibility and reputation. (1 point)
  • Ranking owner has fair credibility and reputation. (3 points)
  • Ranking owner has excellent credibility and reputation. (5 points)

What is the ranking owner’s intention to produce and disseminate the ranking?

  • Ranking is predominantly a tool to raise awareness for the owner with the possible intention to sell consultancy services. (1 point)
  • Ranking is partly a tool to raise awareness for the owner with the possible intention to sell consultancy services. (3 points)
  • Ranking is predominantly a tool to surface and share important insights on the subject surveyed. (5 points)

Is/Are the media outlet(s) where the ranking is published of high credibility and reputation?

  • Media outlet(s) has/have limited credibility and reputation. (1 point)
  • Media outlet(s) has/have fair credibility and reputation. (3 points)
  • Media outlet(s) has/have excellent credibility and reputation. (5 points)

Comment: Published by media world wide, e.g. Financial Times, New York Times, Wall Street Journal

Aggregated points: 15 (of max. 15)

Do the ranking results provide overall orientation where companies stand?

  • limited orientation only (1 point)
  • fair orientation provided (3 points)
  • very good orientation (5 points)

Is the Ranking published in the same format on a regular basis, e.g. annually, which allows to track developments and comparisons over time?

  • ranking is published for the first time (1 point)
  • ranking is published for the second time in the same format (3 points)
  • ranking is published for more than 3 times on a regular basis in the same format (5 points)

Comment: Ranking published for the fourth time since 2008.

Do the ranking results provide added value and further insights on how companies are evaluated in in their industry, e.g. detailed ratings in various sub-dimensions of the overall result?

  • limited added value only (1 point)
  • fair amount of added value (3 points)
  • high amount of added value (5 points)

Aggregated points: 13 (of max. 15)

Is the ranking based on a representative survey among key stakeholders or on a jury only?

  • Ranking is based on a jury’s opinion only. (1 point)
  • Ranking is based on a small survey or only on a limited group of stakeholders. (3 points)
  • Ranking is based on a robust and representative survey. (5 points)

Is the ranking methodology easy to understand and reasonable – even for non-statisticians?

  • Methodology not easy to understand and not reasonable. (1 point)
  • Methodology fairly good to understand and reasonable. (3 points)
  • Methodology very easy to understand and reasonable. (5 points)

Is the ranking methodology easy to access and transparent?

  • Methodology not easy to find and not sufficiently transparent. (1 point)
  • Methodology fairly good to find and of medium transparency. (3 points)
  • Methodology very easy to find and of high transparency. (5 points)

Aggregated points: 13 (of max. 15)

Ranking category

  • Product / Service Brands
  • Company Brands
  • Corporate Reputation and Company Esteem
  • Social Responsibility, CSR & Sustainability, Ethical Business Practices
  • Innovation & Technology
  • Employer Attractiveness & Diversity
  • Leadership
  • Nations & Destinations
  • University & Other Institutions
  • Sports
  • Lifestyle
  • Social Media
  • Personal Branding & CEOs

Ranking statistics

  • Name of Ranking: Access to Medicine Index 2014
  • Ranking managed/produced by institute/organization: Access to Medicine Index Foundation
  • Ranking published by media outlet: published by media world wide, e.g. Financial Times, New York Times, Wall Street Journal
  • Date of recent publication: November 17, 2014
  • Date of previous publication: November 28, 2012

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