WASHINGTON, D.C.— The Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers of America (PhRMA), the trade group representing the leading research-based pharmaceutical and biotechnology companies in the United States, has selected public affairs firm Qorvis Communications to assist with its nationwide strategic public relations efforts.
Since being named CEO at PhRMA more than a year ago, former Louisiana Representative Billy Tauzin and his communications team, led by Ken Johnson, have been implementing an aggressive public relations campaign in an attempt to address the industry’s numerous reputation challenges, from pricing to safety to whether drugs are marketed over-aggressively.
The PhRMA strategy emphasizes public and media education about the organization’s core mission and values and its advocacy for public policies that encourage the discovery of important new medicines. Qorvis will assist PhRMA both in Washington, DC, and nationwide in its education efforts.
“Billy and Ken have reinvented and reinvigorated what a communications department for a trade association should be,” says Michael Petruzzello, Qorvis’ managing partner.
Qorvis will employ a campaign-style approach that is intended to complement PhRMA’s new communications department, which has replaced a once-rigid structure of silos around individual issues with a flat, team-based model the group says has encouraged increased flexibility and creativity.
“In choosing our consulting team, we looked at innovative agencies that understand how to win and are not stuck in the ways of the past,” says Johnson. “What we like most about Qorvis is its broad-based, results-oriented campaign approach to tackling complex public policy debates. It has assembled a first-rate team, and we’re excited to get started.”