W e, at Grünenthal, want to place the patient at the centre of our way of thinking and behavior.

Our daily work, as well as all strategic measures and decisions, are always guided by this vision. This means we set patient priorities and health as our first corporate goal to ensure we have a better understanding of the patient’s needs so that we can develop our business accordingly.

For us, to be patient-centric means: understanding and integrating the patients’ perspective and their unmet needs in our day-to-day activities and decision making. Identifying patients’ needs helps us to reflect how we, as a pharmaceutical company, can improve their situation with our daily work. This not only implies better treatment by e.g. providing better formulations, packaging and labeling, but also offering easy access to information on pain management.

In 2011 we decided to set up a patient ambassador program allowing us to stay in close contact with chronic pain patients. A patient ambassador at Grünenthal is either someone living with chronic pain or someone caring for a pain patient. In addition, these patient ambassadors share our objective: we all want to improve and change the lives of those suffering from chronic pain.

Through the patient ambassador program these patients or their carers have shared their stories with us and through them we have gained an in-depth insight into their lives and learned a lot about the challenges chronic pain patients are facing in their dayto-day life, their dreams and wishes.

The direct contact and integration of the ambassadors in our field of business also enable us to ask them for their open feedback and consultancy on various topics. In the past, several colleagues and departments took the opportunity to invite ambassadors to workshops or discussion rounds to ask for their input on e.g. formulations, packaging, how they rate different side-effects, and feedback on educational material for patients. Additionally they have access to our internal social network. This means that every employee has the possibility of starting discussions with the patient ambassadors and vice versa. This ensures that there is a continuous dialogue between employees and patient ambassadors which is one reason why the ambassadors are really integrated in the Grünenthal culture.

Sometimes, they also participate in external events organized in co-operation with health insurances, patient organizations, physicians and physiotherapists to raise awareness for a multimodal pain therapy approach among the general public. On these occasions the ambassadors share their experience and encourage other patient living with chronic pain not to give up and to work actively with their healthcare teams to find a treatment plan that works for them.

The Grünenthal Group is an independent, family-owned, international research-based pharmaceutical company headquartered in Aachen, Germany.

Building on its unique position in pain treatment, its objective is to become the most patient-centric company in the field of pain and thus to be a leader in therapy innovation. Grünenthal is one of the last remaining five research-oriented pharmaceutical companies with headquarters in Germany which sustainably invests in research and development.