Cancer patients should be living, not just surviving (Guest blog)

Q. Can you explain in a few words the objective of your work within Johnson & Johnson?

I am responsible for the development and execution of the EMEA medical strategy for the solid tumor portfolio for Janssen. I started in this role in November 2016, so relatively recently, with almost 10 years of pharmaceutical industry experience.

Q. Why did you decide to take up this position?

I joined Johnson & Johnson with one main objective: to grow oncology activities and research

Q. What is your main challenge on a day to day basis?

One of the biggest challenges is at the same time one of my key motivators: the race against time. We strive to keep our energy at the highest possible level in order to turn our hypotheses to tangible results as quickly as possible. Every day we are not working with full performance, patients lose precious time. And we need to try to progress equally in every cancer area. That is why we need to be aware of innovation, to be alert, be the front runner.

Q. What are you the proudest of about your job?

I am amazed by the continuous progress made in cancer treatment thanks to so many dedicated people in both the industry and academia who understand to work together in a future-orientated collaboration. Although it is a tedious and lengthy R&D process I am proud of our contributions to society.

Q. What would you like to offer to patients?

Hope and certainty that there are people who dedicate their lives day to day to develop new ways in fighting against cancer and find a cure for their disease. We must not let any patient feel that she or he is alone with cancer. For example, more than three million men in Europe have prostate cancer and almost half of them have lived with the disease for five years or more, according to the European Commission. Advances in the management of prostate cancer mean that more patients are looking ahead at what it means to live as a survivor.

Q. What is your pledge for this campaign?

I won’t rest until we find a cure for each and every type of cancer.

Author Bio

Dr Ivo Winiger-Candolfi is responsible for the development and execution of the EMEA medical strategy for the solid tumor portfolio. Ivo holds an MD from the University of Bern, Switzerland and a board certificate in surgery with a focus in oncology surgery of visceral and endocrine tumors. Prior to joining the pharmaceutical industry, he trained and practiced for 8 years at the University Hospital in Bern and at the MS Anderson Cancer Centre in Houston.