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EF: What mission were you given at J&J MedTech when appointed in January 2020 and how did that change by March 2020?

GG: Brazil is a very important market for Johnson & Johnson MedTech. J&J has altered the trajectory of healthcare for humanity, reaching over 275 million lives worldwide and we hope to take it to the next level by improving the lives of the more than 6 million people that we touch each year in Brazil. In order to achieve that, we need to be constantly working with the team to develop the future leaders of Brazil. We must remain close to the health professionals, connect with doctors, see how we could help them, and support them in this new world. In the two years of the pandemic, the world advanced in many aspects; including digital world utilization. It was a huge advancement, and we learned a lot in that process. From our side, did our best to be there for procedures, and surgeries where they needed our support.

EF: What business, management, or leadership lessons did you learn during the pandemic?

GG: I will share some of the things I was reminded of. First, is the importance of focusing on what you can control. That was a focus for the whole team because people were impacted differently by COVID. This is a very individual pandemic. Second, we were reminded to listen and be close to our customers. We didn't know there was going to be so much change, so we had to adapt, support, and partner with some start-ups to back up some of the doctors on the way they deliver care. Johnson & Johnson MedTech has always been very close to healthcare professionals. Some had to work long hours and their emotional health was impacted. So, when we saw this, we partnered with a start-up and implemented a program called Cuidando de Quem Cuida de Nós (Taking care of who takes care of us) that used technology to offer emotional support to over 10,000 healthcare professionals whenever they needed help.

We learned a lot during this pandemic. At Johnson & Johnson MedTech, we are proud of our agility, the partnership we forged and the closeness to our customers. From my perspective, people in Brazil are prioritizing health over other discretionary spending. We have a huge responsibility, and that's our reason for business, that the quality of health for the patients is the best possible and more people can have access to it. These years have been a reminder not to take health for granted. J&J MedTech is committed to giving doctors the right tools and works with healthcare partners to make sure that patients have better care and there's a better outcome. We strive to create a connection with the patient from the pre-operative to the post, and a better connection to the doctor.  

EF: Have you adopted any new KPIs during the pandemic and post-pandemic world?

GG: Some of the KPIs come from the new mindset of being agile, learning, and testing. One of the first initiatives during the whole pandemic was to simplify some of our processes. As a leader, I would say to my team " Let's listen to the experts and there is going to be an iteration, we're going to get it wrong, but we will eventually get it right. Let's fail fast so we can get the patient faster."

EF: What can you share about the J&J MedTech transformation?

GG: We are going through this transformation as Johnson and Johnson MedTech. I'm blessed to work in a broad-based healthcare company like J&J. We have processes in general surgery, orthopaedics, and cardiology. Our portfolio goes beyond a product, it’s about how you offer solutions for the doctor, the payer, the hospital, and the patient that must be covered pre, during, and post-operation. We don't sell pills; we sell technology and it's very important for us that our surgeons and doctors have the right ability to do their best during surgery. We implemented the first C-SAT in Latin America, which is a system where the doctor records and uploads the surgery, between artificial intelligence and peer-to-peer review of thousands of doctors around the world. The doctor can compare his surgery and get peer-to-peer feedback, on how he can improve his surgery. You create capacity in the system, for more patients to have access to healthcare.

EF: How would you rate the level of adoption of Brazilian physicians to tech?

GG: Some of the most innovative reference doctors for many specialities are in Brazil. Some people are going to be late adopters or early adopters, but we have many different specialists. Some of our global key opinion leaders are here, and we are involved in some of the technologies that we are evaluating for Johnson & Johnson for the next 5 to 15 years. Because of the abilities of the Brazilian surgeons, we're involving local institutions to be part of the development of the programs. The Brazilian surgeons are quite open to innovation and anything that is going to improve technique that is going to end up improving the outcome for the patient. When I look at Brazilian physicians, I see a surgeon willing to learn something new. It's no coincidence that in many of the specialities, the top doctors, are Brazilian doctors.

EF: What is the strategic importance of J&J Brazil beyond the size of the market?

GG: A lot of the KOL’S in many of the specialities are from Brazil. Even on global boards, Brazilian doctors are a key part of it. For Johnson and Johnson MedTech to continue winning by being able to deliver better healthcare, Brazil is absolutely part of that footprint. In addition, we have an asset in Brazil, our people. We have a fantastic team of professionals that in my view, and quite humbly are the best of the best in the industry. We're implementing some things and we will export to other parts of Johnson & Johnson MedTech or other parts of the world.

EF: 2020 was a year of diagnostics, 2021 was the year of vaccines. What do you think 2022 will be the year of?

GG: I think 2022 is the year of healthcare. The year when people realize how important their health is. Hopefully, this is a beginning of not a year, but a decade of healthcare in Brazil. We've seen over 1.5 million people going for private insurance to get care and go to the doctors.

EF: You mentioned earlier, that you have the ‘best team’. How do you attract the best and the brightest?  

GG: It's a very diverse open-minded and inclusive culture, and it is important that our J&J Brazil subsidiary must reflect the reality of what the market is. That's something we take very seriously. During the pandemic, one thing that we saw a bit of a trial, with, was people that were in vulnerable situations, younger talent on their privilege, 18 to 20 years old, they did not have a job. They left school and what we saw was that we have a big need for healthcare start-ups to have program developers. So, we launched in conjunction with start-up the start-up hub, we called it MilDevs.  

We have a target to educate and help over 1000 young people. Last year, we had the first 80 young professionals. They were selected and trained for six months to develop software using Python and then they were guaranteed to be hired by a healthcare start-up, or even by Johnson & Johnson for three months. When you listen to these young people talking today, it has not only changed their life and opened a future, but it's changing the lives of their parents, and the grandfather that raised the person. You're helping the young professionals that are underprivileged. So that's something where we partner with a start-up to do that, and we're very proud and pleased.

EF: What's your definition of access, and what does access mean to you?

GG: Access is how we can improve or save the lives of more Brazilian patients. Our technology should not be limited to a few. Touching the lives of 6 million patients is not enough. In order to do that, you need to get a better outcome, so you have a more efficient system to touch more patients. That is access to me. Technology will be absolutely essential; it will help us to get waste out of the way. The technology is not done by a robot, but by having the right people behind it, to be able to enable it.

EF: Seeing that you’ve been in Brazil for almost 90 years when you raise a glass of champagne, what is your speech going to look like?

GG: We have this privilege to improve people's lives. This year, we want to improve and save the life of at least 6 million Brazilians. How do we go for 20?  I would also say “Thank you. You know our responsibility to our patients, to our employees, to our communities, and our shareholders. This is just starting, there's so much that we have done, but there's so much more remaining for us to do in improving access and outcomes.”

May 2022