Friday, June 22, 2007

Corporate Social Responsibility & Healthcare Business in Middle East

A study by Walker Research found that when price and quality are equal, 76% of consumers would switch brands or retailers if a company is associated with a good cause.

Healthcare business works to improve and maintain individual and community health. Healthcare sector proactively seeks out the health needs of the community and address those needs through the strategic growth of programs and services. All the stakeholders in the healthcare sector (Medical Equipment manufacturers & dealers, pharmaceutical companies, hospitals, etc.) have responsibility for social and economical development. Corporate Social Reponsibility (CSR) is the systemized way of resonsible business.

CSR is essential to the long prosperity of companies as it provides the opportunity to demonstrate the human face of business, a vital link to society in general and, in particular, to the communities in which businesses are located. CSR is about how businesses align their values and behaviour with the expectations and needs of stakeholders - not just customers and investors, but also employees, suppliers, communities, regulators, special interest groups and society as a whole.

Key CSR planning issues include governance, responsible sourcing, eco-efficiency, environmental management, stakeholder engagement, labour standards, employee and community relations, social equity and human rights.

Developing (and communicating) a comprehensive CSR strategy takes time, commitment, focus, and designated people and financial resources. And, it requires commitment from the executive offices on down to every individual department and staff position. To be truly effective, your CSR strategy must permeate all you do – from hiring to branding to manufacturing to sales – and it must become part of your “corporate DNA”.

Healthcare companies would focus on the needs of community, environment, workplace and marketplace to reach and plan successful CSR programs. Those closer relationship and familarization will make the business stronger at risk management. It’s been shown that companies who put responsible business at their core innovate and develop new products and services, access new markets, recruit a more diverse and talented workforce and are better placed to minimise risk. Risk management skills in healthcare sector are always identified as the main critical success factor.

CSR is not only about fulfilling a duty to society; it can also bring competitive advantage. CSR always will be a main effect on the customer royalty and today’s marketing plannings can not miss such social and business investment.

Through an effective CSR programme, companies can:
• improve their access to capital
• enhance their brand image
• increase sales
• attract, retain, motivate and develop employees
• sharpen decision-making
• improve risk management
• reduce costs.

Quick CSR Samples from Healthcare Business
• Environmental waste control and recycling solutions
• Check-Up and diagnosis focused field projects
• Training opportunities for young people
• Research projects or Supports to projects
• Satellite or portable rural area clinics
• Awareness and training programs
• Choice of suppliers through their CSR programs
• Improving the quality of management and service
• Etc.

ConclusionHealthcare business sector should be the perfect sample of responsible business and should lead people and other businesses to invest for society. Healthcare sector in Middle East should underscore its role as a good corporate citizen with a number of activities in the fields of education and research, environment, social needs, sports and culture to be the leader of sustainable development. Are you ready to get step front with your CSR programs?

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