Updated on 7 March 2013
Ms Julie Phillips, CEO, BioDiem, Australia
"Obstacles are those frightful things you see when you take your eyes off your goal." — Henry Ford
I started my career with a Bachelor of Pharmacy and worked as a clinical pharmacist at Sydney and Westmead Hospitals between 1978 and 1984. This involved participation in ward rounds to contribute information and discuss elements of a patient's treatment as well as the traditional dispensing role. It was an enormously valuable opportunity and I was able to see and learn about many different therapeutic areas from paediatrics, infectious diseases, and cardiovascular to oncology. I then went back to Sydney University and completed a Master of Science degree, submitting research investigating the different way elderly patients handle treatment by some antibiotics.
When I finished my Master of Science degree in 1984, I moved into my first multi-national pharmaceutical company role working in regulatory affairs. This included preparing the dossiers to gain approval to either conduct clinical trials or market new drugs, and medical information. The role gave me a good appreciation of the rigor and requirements needed to get a drug on the market.
I then went back to work in the public sector, at Concord Hospital, managing their clinical trial program and sat on the Drugs and Ethics Committees. This was a part time role because I was also looking after three young children at home.
My career then changed gear and I was attracted to the Swiss multinational pharma giant, Sandoz, where I worked my way up into senior management at its Australian affiliate organization. My department was responsible for regulatory affairs, quality assurance, medical information and pharmacoeconomics for the Australian and NZ group. This was followed by a similar role at the contract research group (CRO) Covance.