IHE Biosimilars Forum: Key People


Dr. Richard N Fedorak, MD, FRCPC, FRCP (London), FRSC
Dean of the Faculty of Medicine and Dentistry
Professor of Medicine, Division of Gastroenterology
University of Alberta, Edmonton, Alberta, Canada

Dr. Richard N Fedorak is Dean of the Faculty of Medicine and Dentistry at the University of Alberta, Edmonton, Alberta, Canada. He is also Professor of Medicine in the Division of Gastroenterology at the University of Alberta. Outside of the University Dr. Fedorak is President, Canadian Digestive Health Foundation (CDHF) and Chairman, Research Committee, World Gastroenterology Organization. He is a member of the Medical Staff at both the University of Alberta Hospitals and the Cross Cancer Institute, and is a Consulting Physician at the Stollery Children’s Health Centre of Northern Alberta and the Royal Alexandra Hospital. In 1978, Dr. Fedorak received his medical degree with First Class Honours from the University of Alberta, Edmonton, Alberta, Canada. His postdoctoral training included an internship at the University of Western Ontario, in London, Ontario, and residency training in General Internal Medicine at the University of Toronto. His Gastroenterology Clinical and Research Fellowship training was carried out at the University of Chicago and Columbia University, New York. In 1987, Dr. Fedorak returned to the University of Alberta as an Alberta Heritage Foundation for Medical Research Clinical Investigator. A recipient of numerous awards, research fellowships and grants, Dr. Fedorak is a recognized expert in inflammatory bowel disease. He has an active basic gastrointestinal research laboratory in the area of mucosal immunology, inflammation, and membrane function and structure. In addition, he leads a large gastrointestinal disease clinical research group. Dr. Fedorak serves on multiple national and international scientific advisory boards. He has published over 500 peer-reviewed manuscripts and book chapters, produced two patents on colonic-specific drug delivery, and has lectured around the world. He has multiple grant review committee memberships and editorial positions with front ranked gastrointestinal journals. In 2011 Dr. Fedorak founded a University spin-out company, Metabolomic Technologies Inc. (www.metabolomicttechnologies.ca), which is developing a patented urine-based screening test for detection of colonic adenomatous polyps as its flagship diagnostic test for clinical practice. Dr. Fedorak has served as President of the Canadian Association of Gastroenterology, President of the University of Alberta Hospital Medical Staff, President of the Alberta Society of Gastroenterology, President of the World Congress of Gastroenterology Bid Federation, General Secretary of the Pan American Congress of Gastroenterology and President of the World Congress of Gastroenterology.Dr. Fedorak has been appointed as a Fellow, Royal College of Physicians, London, Fellow, Canadian Academy of Health Sciences and Fellow of the Royal Society of Canada.

Mr. Murray Aitken
Senior Vice President, IMS Health
Executive Director, IMS Institute for Healthcare Informatics
New York, USA

Murray Aitken is a senior vice president at IMS Health and the executive director of the IMS Institute for Healthcare Informatics. Mr. Aitken is a renowned healthcare expert on addressing the challenges facing the global healthcare industry and prospects for improving patient outcomes, managing costs and maximizing access through better use of healthcare data and information. Established in 2011, The IMS Institute provides global policy setters and decision makers with objective, transformational insights into healthcare dynamics derived from granular analysis of information. Throughout his 15-year tenure at IMS Health, Mr. Aitken served in various roles responsible for healthcare insights, corporate strategy, and consulting and services. Prior, Mr. Aitken was a partner at McKinsey & Company in New Jersey and Los Angeles in the U.S. and in Seoul, Korea, covering a broad range of industries, including life sciences and consumer goods. He holds an MBA, with distinction from Harvard University and Masters of Commerce from the University of Auckland in New Zealand. A frequent speaker on the international healthcare industry circuit, Aitken’s perspectives are widely covered in the business/financial press, including The Wall Street Journal, The Financial Times, Fortune, Time, The Associated Press, Bloomberg Business, Reuters, CNBC as well as in local market publications across Europe, Asia and Latin America.

Dr. Asbjørn Mack
Chief Negotiator Pharmaceuticals
LIS (Drug Procurement Cooperation)
Department in HINAS (Norwegian Health Procurement)
Oslo, Norway

Dr. Asbjørn Mack was educated as a Doctor of Medicine at the University of Oslo and a Business Economist at the Norwegian Business School. His current position is Chief Negotiator Pharmaceuticals in Oslo, Norway with LIS (Drug Procurement Cooperation). LIS manages all tenders for pharmaceuticals paid for by the hospitals and is owned by the Regional Health Authorities. He is responsible for analyzing hospital use of drugs and providing advice on how to use the LIS tenders to gain more health resources from a fixed budget. He has a special focus on the use of biosimilars. He is also responsible for negotiating prices on new expensive drugs paid for by the hospitals to secure cost-effective use. He is a member of all specialist committees in LIS. Previously he set up Drammen Occupational Medical Service in 1983 and worked as General Manager/Industrial Medical Officer until a move to the pharmaceutical industry in 1990. He started with Novo Nordisk Pharma followed by Aventis Pharma, Fujisawa Scandinavia, Sanofi-Aventis, Wyeth and Pfizer. His main focus during 25 years in the pharmaceutical industry has been market access oriented; pricing, reimbursement, economic analyses and contact with health authorities. His last position as Health & Value Lead in Pfizer included a focus on biosimilars. He was a member of the Health Economics Committee in the Association of the Pharmaceutical Industry in Norway from 2005 to end 2014, and a member of the Biosimilar Ad hoc Committee from the start in 2010 to end 2014.

Ms. Gail Attara
President & CEO GI (Gastrointestinal) Society
Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada

Gail Attara began with the GI Society (www.badgut.org) in 1996 as Executive Director of the organization’s sister charity, The Canadian Society of Intestinal Research, and led that organization from a small BC charity into a national presence before co-founding the GI Society in 2008. The two organizations collaborate to provide useable evidence-based information to gastrointestinal and liver patients in Canada. Gail’s motto, ‘the patient comes first’, directs her resolve for patient-focused health care and commitment to increasing awareness about the seriousness of digestive illnesses. Gail has a solid background in public relations and fundraising and is an active community volunteer in Canada serving on numerous Boards, and overseas, where she has worked with orphans. She is also a published freelance author. Gail has been an invited speaker coast-to-coast on numerous occasions, to wide-ranging audiences, including physicians, patients, pharmacists, and health care decision-makers. Participating as a member of the Best Medicines Coalition since 2005, Gail is now serving her seventh year as Chair. Gail is a member of the Consensus Framework for Ethical Collaboration among health care stakeholders, the Innovative Medicines Canada Stakeholder and Partnerships Advisory Group, and is on the CADTH Patient Community Liaison Forum, to name a few initiatives. Gail is also co-founder of Advocacy Boot Camp Inc., where she fulfills her goal of expanding the network of knowledgeable patient advocates working in health.

Dr. Stephanie Keeling
Associate Professor of Medicine
Division of Rheumatology
University of Alberta, Edmonton, Alberta, Canada

Dr. Stephanie Keeling is an Associate Professor of Medicine at the University of Alberta Division of Rheumatology. She completed her Master’s in Experimental Medicine with Walter Maksymowych studying inflammatory back pain in spondyloarthritis. Since that time, she has established the University of Alberta Lupus Program with conjoint clinics in Dermatology. She has also collaborated with Cardiology at the Mazankowski Heart Institute and conducted a Cardiovascular Risk Reduction Clinic for Inflammatory Rheumatic Diseases which has now evolved into the new ON-Traac (On Treating Rheumatoid Arthritis, Access to Care) program with co-director Steven Katz. This treat-to-target clinic for inflammatory arthritis includes comorbidity management for osteoporosis and cardiovascular risk utilizing a shared care model with allied health professionals. She is currently the principal investigator of GRADE-based recommendations for the diagnosis and management of lupus in Canada. She also participates in the teaching of medical students, residents and fellows.

Mr. Steve Long
S. C. Long Consulting Ltd.
Calgary, Alberta, Canada

Steve Long has held progressively senior pharmacy leadership positions in hospital, government and community pharmacy practice environments. He has held operational responsibility for pharmacy systems within the hospitals of the Calgary Health Region, pharmaceutical policy creation and strategy execution roles for the Alberta Government and provided insight into national public policy and thought leadership within Shoppers Drug Mart. Through these opportunities Steve has gained insight into formulary and drug listing decisions for hospitals, public and private payers, conceived and implemented pharmacy practice change and designed drug benefit plans. Steve supports clients in addressing challenges by applying his varied and broad insights and experience, by listening and communicating in an open and transparent manner and by offering creative solutions which meet the needs of patients and other health system stakeholders. Steve attained a Bachelor of Science and Bachelor of Science in Pharmacy from the University of Alberta, a Residency in Hospital Pharmacy from the Ottawa General Hospital and his Master of Business Administration from the University of Calgary. Steve currently works as a pharmacy and health system consultant based in Calgary, Alberta, Canada.