Sharing Professional Experience
Throughout the year, we would hold a number of activities to enhance communication among undergraduates in different years and eventually unite the School as a whole. In addition, ‘Pharminent’ would actively seek for opportunities to cooperate with external pharmacist bodies to promote the positive image of the profession in and outside the university.
Senior Regulatory and Medical Affairs Manager - Pharmaceutical Industry
by Ms. Connie Kong
The first sentence in the briefing I received from the newsletter editor asked me to recount one of the most memorable events during my study in CU. I had one of those great “aha” flashbacks — Prof. Kenneth Lee showing how to steadily melt beeswax and transfer the cream into a plastic container, while all us girls were dying to rush out of the lab and try our own DIY aqueous cosmetic on our faces. I wonder if that was the sort of thing the editor had in mind?
I was in the fourth cohort of students from the School of Pharmacy. I am now a senior regulatory and medical affairs manager at GlaxoSmithKline, managing product registrations, medical affairs, pharmacovigilance activities, and quality assurance issues. I also work with commercial teams to ensure that the company’s promotional activities comply with internal and external regulations. I take pleasure in working in a multinational pharmaceutical company, because interacting with people from different cultures and functional backgrounds is always illuminating.
Our CU training gave us a strong competitive advantage in the pharmaceutical industry. Our strong academic background taught us the real beauty of medicine, and we also came to understand the health care environment and the relationships among the many different stakeholders. If you wish to join the pharmaceutical industry, cultivate an open and flexible mind. It’s truly amazing to find how swiftly a project can moves or how a business plan can evolve overnight, thanks to the combined efforts from R&D, manufacturing, legal, sales and marketing. Among others, the ability to work in a cross-functional team is of paramount importance.
Recent incidents relating to drug quality and safety in Hong Kong have shown that there is room for improvement in many areas, including product registration, quality assurance in the manufacturing and supply chain, management responsibilities and compliance control. Whatever reasons may have contributed to the failure to address such issues in the past, it is time for us pharmacists to become even more proactively involved in the development of Hong Kong’s pharmaceutical industry in Hong Kong.
I have found that many of the most successful general managers and other leaders in this industry are qualified pharmacists. You too can be a future captain of industry and so help to further the overall safety and well-being of the general public!