June 10, 2020
(Klik hier voor de Nederlandstalige versie van dit bericht)
We find ourselves in quite exceptional times. When we were casually living our lives, suddenly the world was locked down due to a virus. At DADA we have a practice of e-management. I mean, nowadays that is very well manageable with video conferencing, email and e-submission. So, what we do are project kick-offs with clients in person, and then run the project from our office in Nijmegen. It is super-efficient and we have all the expertise in a single building. But obviously our office too closed due to Covid-19. For the time being that’s no big deal in terms of running our projects. With our laptops and remote connections, we can work from anywhere. DADA has been doing great.
But I have not seen some colleagues in person for over 3 months. Right after the outbreak the government coined the social distancing measures, which are great for stopping viruses spread, but we had to learn distant socializing to stay mentally healthy. Distant socializing is a surrogate. Yes, video-conferencing is suitable for work, but it is not suitable for chit-chat over coffee. You simply do not stumble into people over skype. So guaranteed DADA will have another activity day as soon as possible. Man, am I looking forward to that!
I agree with Michiel. The temporary closure of the DADA POLSKA office and the switch to working from home did not affect greatly my day-to-day schedule. As I mentioned in the first part, working remotely is normal for DADA. We have our channels of communication within the team, as well as with our clients and these have been running smoothly. However, some projects got delayed due to clinical trials being cancelled or other bottlenecks down the product pipelines. Let us hope that patients will not suffer any negative consequences because of these.
On the other hand, the last three months have been challenging socially. We all had to step up and be proactive in distant socializing. The small things we took for granted became harder to organize. I too miss the personal contact with my colleagues and the visits to the Nijmegen office. But as a predominantly yellow person (according to my DISC analysis), I know that staying positive is key and we will overcome this together.
And yet again, what exceptional times we had back in 2016, when the UK challenged us. Not only as EU citizens, but as professionals too. Brexit is huge for us as consultants. E-submission or XEVMPD is dwarfed in the face of Brexit. Relocating manufacturing sites, changing EU QPPVS, RMS-switches. I almost forgot that EMA had to relocate due to Brexit. It has been quiet now for a few months, but the new deadline of end 2020 is already expected to be too short for the “orderly fashion leave”. We have a kind of suspended excitement over it.
It is hard for me to comment on Brexit professionally. We participated in some panel discussions and saw a lot of presentations full of predictions and speculations in the media, however only time will tell how it will all come down. The Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA, UK) has been a key partner in developing the GVP guidelines and other EU PV legislation so I do not expect them to get alienated fast.
On a personal note, Brexit is difficult to imagine as well. We all have a lot of friends and some even have family living in the UK. As a pro-EU person, I have always tried to represent the local within the global so it is sad to see people thinking and acting predominantly locally. We should try to concentrate on the values that unite us and not on what divides us.