Medicines for Ireland has announced the appointment of Managing Director of Accord Healthcare Ireland, Padraic O’Brien as new Chairperson of the organisation, with Paul Neill, Director of Generic Products for Teva Pharmaceuticals Ireland, taking over the role of Vice Chairperson.

Since its foundation in 2016, Medicines for Ireland has been promoting the benefits of the increased use of generic and biosimilar medicines in Ireland. The organisation’s core objective is to improve the way Ireland procures and supplies medicines, in order to expand the patient access to affordable, lifesaving and life-enhancing treatment.

Chairperson, Padraic O’Brien previously served as MFI Vice Chairperson in 2020 and 2021. Through MFI, he has been actively engaging with policy makers on both a national and European level with respect to increasing access of affordable medicines for patients, as well as highlighting the need for safeguarding measures to be putting place to help mitigate threats to the supply of medicines to Ireland brought about by Brexit and Covid-19.

Following his appointment to the role of Chairperson, Mr O’Brien stated “I am honoured to take over the role of Chairperson after a very successful year at MFI. Our strong contribution to the recent Framework Agreements on Pricing and Supply of Medicines 2021-2025 recently agreed with the Department of Health, the Department of Public Expenditure and Reform, and the HSE, is the culmination of two years of hard work from the MFI membership and in particular outgoing Chairperson, David Delaney.

This new Framework Agreement on the supply and pricing of non-originator, generic, biosimilar, and hybrid medicines announced by Minister for Health, Stephen Donnelly in mid-December is estimated to reduce the State spend on medicines by up to €700 million, while dramatically improving access to innovative new medicines for patients nationwide.”

Newly appointed Vice Chairperson, Paul Neill is Director of Generic Medicines for Teva Pharmaceuticals, the largest supplier of prescription medicines to the State and has experience working in the pharmaceutical sector for almost twenty years.

“As we look to the future, Medicines for Ireland will continue to engage with the Minister for Health, the Department of Health, the HSE and Government on key issues, especially on expanding access and usage of generic and biosimilar medicines. In Ireland, we continue to remain well below what is the norm in most other European States, and while much progress has been made, much more can be done in this area,” said Mr Neill.

Mr O’Brien concluded “I look forward to leading Medicines for Ireland on these issues ensuring that Ireland’s approach to medicines serves the best interests of patients, their healthcare professionals and the State.”