31. January 2012 14:10
James Murdoch, leader of News International, has resigned from the board of pharma corporation GlaxoSmithKline (GSK) in the UK.
GSK has explained Murdoch’s resignation after three years as being due to his planned move to the US.
Murdoch was appointed by GSK as a non-executive director and member of its corporate responsibility committee in 2009, on a salary of nearly £100,000 per annum.
His role was described as being concerned with “external issues that might have the potential for serious impact upon the group’s business and reputation”.
The company denies any link between Murdoch’s departure and the forthcoming report of the Leveson committee into phone-hacking at News International.
Praising Murdoch’s “very strong contribution” to the company, GSK Chairman Sir Chris Gent said: “James has taken this decision to focus on his current duties as non-executive chairman of BSkyB, and following his decision to re-locate to the United States, as chairman and chief executive, international, of News Corporation.”
Gent commented at the time of Murdoch’s appointment to GSK: “He will be an excellent addition to the board’s corporate responsibility committee, an area where he has shown particular leadership at BSkyB and News Corporation.”
19. August 2011 14:55
It’s now over a month since the Government published its revisions to the Health and Social Care Bill. Those revisions will soon be debated in Parliament as MPs re-evaluate the legislation. Crunch time is fast approaching. And assuming that the wreckage of the phone hacking scandal has been cleared from the nation’s front pages, it’s safe to assume that Andrew Lansley’s apparently radical overhaul of the NHS will yet again face great media scrutiny.
Current commentary suggests that the redrawn plans have created confusion where there was once fleeting clarity. One senior pharma industry leader used Viz-like profanities to describe the shift from focused GP Consortia to broader Clinical Commissioning Groups. Pharma’s key customer-base has been a moving target for many years. Just when it threatened to narrow and become clearer, it moved again. The BMA, who pushed for change, is now seeking assurances that the revisions aren’t simply a case of ‘turning a pig’s breakfast into a dog’s dinner.’
DH attempts to clarify the transition to a new landscape through the creation of SHA clusters – however sensible and necessary – will undoubtedly add to the short-term confusion. For those inside the NHS, and those selling into it.
Chris Ross, Editor
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