Pfizer and IntraHealth Executive Global Health Team Project: A Win-Win Partnership

In December, a year-long initiative between IntraHealth International and Pfizer culminated as Pfizer’s 2015 Executive Global Health Team Project came to a close. This project combines Pfizer’s commitment to skills-based volunteerism with its internal senior leadership development program to bring some of its best talent and strategic thinking to bear on challenges non-governmental organizations (NGOs) are facing. IntraHealth was Pfizer’s sole NGO partner for this program in 2015.

The small group of Pfizer senior leaders was tasked with designing, planning, and executing a volunteer consulting assignment that would provide IntraHealth with recommendations to achieve the goals outlined in its 2015-2017 Beyond Boundaries organizational strategy. Specifically, IntraHealth asked the team to focus on accelerating the use of technology within its health programs; stimulating private sector engagement; and augmenting measurement, analytics, and advocacy efforts.

In addition to meeting and consulting with IntraHealth’s leadership and senior staff in the US, the team split in two to visit IntraHealth’s offices, partners, and programs in Uganda and Tanzania last November. In December, the team presented IntraHealth with its final global and country specific observations and recommendations.

 “In 2015, we started to implement a new organizational strategy, and the timing of this collaborative project with Pfizer could not have been better,” says Rebecca Kohler, IntraHealth’s Senior Vice President of Corporate Strategy and Development. “Our partners at Pfizer brought their expertise and infused our plans for implementing our strategy with savvy, new perspectives and creativity. Traveling with them also reminded me of the value NGOs can bring to the private sector with our viewpoints on and connections within the health sectors in low- and middle-income countries.”

The partnership was designed to be mutually beneficial.

“This partnership with IntraHealth gave our leaders the opportunity to share their business acumen to help IntraHeath advance its important mission to strengthen health systems for communities in need around the world,” says Caroline Roan, Pfizer Vice President of Corporate Responsibility. “In turn, this immersion experience expanded our leaders’ perspectives and appreciation for health needs in emerging markets and the role NGOs play in addressing global health challenges.”

IntraHealth and Pfizer have partnered on a variety of projects over the last decade. To date, IntraHealth has hosted 12 Pfizer Global Health Fellows in five countries, and from 2007-2011 IntraHealth led Pfizer’s Mobilize Against Malaria program in Senegal. Pfizer has also sponsored and presented at IntraHealth’s annual SwitchPoint event.