Impact of Innovative Multinational Pharmaceutical Companies

Operating in South Africa


The Innovative Pharmaceutical association South Africa (IPASA) was established in April 2013. IPASA was formed from a desire for a credible, respected association to engage with stakeholders in both the private and public sectors. IPASA comprises of numerous research-based pharmaceutical companies and aims to be an association that focuses on building an environment for sustainable access to innovative research-based healthcare.

Dedicated to innovative medicine

The Innovative Pharmaceutical Association of South Africa (IPASA) is a voluntary association of leading international companies dedicated to researching and developing novel medications, medical devices and diagnostic tools. As an association, IPASA aims to promote a sustainable environment for the pharmaceutical industry to invest in the research and development of innovative pharmaceuticals, contribute to a patient-centered health system and bring the benefits of breakthrough treatments to patients across South Africa.

Committed to a healthier South Africa

Spanning the entire pharmaceutical value chain – from development, to manufacturing and distribution – IPASA supports initiatives in both the public and private healthcare sectors to help develop practical solutions to address the country’s most pressing healthcare challenges. IPASA’s philosophy is one of collaboration with other role players in the healthcare sector to achieve maximum benefit from the latest discoveries and technologies in the field of pharmaceuticals.

Pioneering pharmaceutical research and development

By promoting significant investment in research and development, advancing ethical conduct and setting the bar for excellence in the pharmaceutical industry, IPASA aims to create a way for more effective, convenient and safer drug therapies to be made available to patients in South Africa.


Support and promote high standards of research and development of pharmaceutical solutions, to contribute positively to the healthcare value chain and to advance ethical conduct in the pharmaceutical industry.


Shape an environment where innovation and excellence in the SA pharmaceutical industry can flourish and add significant value.

Our main areas of focus include:
  • Promoting members’ common interests to benefit consumers;
  • Supporting a vibrant, flourishing research and development-based pharmaceutical industry  in South Africa to contribute to the patient’s wellbeing and the economy;
  • Engaging and communicating with government, non-governmental organisations, healthcare providers, communities and other stakeholders in the healthcare system to find solutions to pressing healthcare challenges;
  • Contributing innovation to patient-centred healthcare in South Africa;
  • Supporting education, research and sharing of knowledge and information in the field of pharmaceuticals and health sciences.

Ethical Conduct in Promoting our Products

As a proud member of the International Federation of Pharmaceutical Manufacturers and Associations (IFPMA), IPASA’s Code on Interactions with Health Care Professionals embodies the principles of the IFPMA Code and we strongly endorse the Ethos of trust that serves as the foundation for the IFPMA Code and industry’s interactions with the health care community. IPASA is committed to following the highest ethical standards as well as all legal requirements.

Ethical relationships with healthcare professionals are critical to our mission. An important part of achieving this mission is:

  • ensuring that healthcare professionals have the latest, most accurate information available regarding prescription medicines, which play an ever-increasing role in patient health care;
  • healthcare professionals are informed about the benefits and risks of our products to help advance appropriate patient use;
  • scientific and educational information is provided;
  • medical research and education is supported, and
  • feedback and advice about our products is delivered through consultation with medical experts.

IPASA will remain an affiliate of the local Marketing Code Authority (MCA) and be subject to the sanctions imposed by the Marketing Code Authority;  however IPASA will always adhere to the more stringent provision or requirement in the IFPMA code”


IPASA’s executive committee consists of a president, vice president, five committee members and an ex officio member.


Zweli Bashman – MSD Managing Director for South Africa & Sub Saharan Africa

Vice President

Wendy Cupido – Roche General Manager


  • Aurélien Breton – Servier General Manager Southern Africa
  • Barnaby McKay – Astellas Managing Director South Africa at Astellas Europe
  • Rachel O’Neale – Novartis General Manager, Novartis Pharma Vietnam
  • Sara Norcross – Novo Nordisk Vice President & General Manager South Africa
  • Ahmed Ram – AbbVie Inc. General Manager, South Africa & Regional Africa
Constitution of Innovative Pharmaceutical Association of South Africa

View the 2019 Constitution


Zweli Bashman

IPASA President

Wendy Cupido

IPASA Vice President


IPASA CEO, Ex-Officio

Siphiwe Ledingwane

Director: Public Relations, Communications and Projects


values and innovative medicines-01Many people are not aware of the contribution that pharmaceutical companies make to human welfare. Not only do their medicines save lives, improve health, and prolong and enhance the quality of life, but medicines also reduce overall healthcare costs by speeding up recovery times. Often they reduce the need for surgery and hospitalisation.


Today’s new medicines often result in better adherence and compliance due to simpler dosage regimens, improved delivery systems and fewer side-effects. Nowadays the harmful consequences of many diseases – like amputation in diabetes and strokes or heart attacks as a result of high blood pressure or cholesterol – can be prevented. Historically deadly diseases like smallpox, polio, diabetes, asthma, heart attacks, TB and malaria can now be treated successfully.


Although much progress has been made in developing new medicines in the last few decades, innovation remains an essential component of the global healthcare industry. Unmet medical needs, the emergence of new infectious diseases and the “super bugs” that are produced by increasing resistance to existing treatments bring new challenges every day. IPASA believes it is critical to continually garner the commitment and support of all our pharmaceutical stakeholders, and to establish effective networks and partnerships that will continue to boost innovation, improve treatment and save lives. As a member of the International Federation Of Pharmaceutical Manufacturers & Associations (IFPMA), IPASA and its members uphold the research and development of safe, high-quality and effective disease treatments that improve patients’ health. This work includes the development of innovative drugs and vaccines, the support for programmes of research and development for diseases prevailing in developing countries, and research into paediatric medicines. South Africa’s pharmaceutical industry does more than provide health-promoting medicines to South Africans. It also makes a substantial contribution to the region by investing in local healthcare and ensuring continued access to new medicines. In addition, pharmaceutical companies stimulate the local economy through employment, taxes, skills development and technology transfer.


An overarching ethic of IPASA members is that they conduct business in a socially responsible and friendly manner – in the South African spirit of Ubuntu – and they help communities through numerous social investment programmes.