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Frequently Asked Questions
Our vision: At OWP, we envision a world where all people get the best level of medical care regardless of who they are or where they live.
Our mission: OWP Pharmaceuticals delivers quality branded generic epilepsy medications that are replicable and fairly priced. Our strategic focus is to support neurologists and patients in the U.S. with beneficial products and to use the majority of profits to provide resources for those living with epilepsy in under-resourced areas of the world. We do this by partnering with the ROW Foundation to improve the diagnosis and treatment available to these under-resourced patients and their families. This symbiotic relationship enables us to better serve the entire epilepsy community. Thus our motto: One World. One Standard.
OWP Pharmaceuticals was started in 2013 to help alleviate some of the medical and pharmaceutical injustices that exist between people in low- and middle-income countries and wealthier, more economically-developed countries. A small group of individuals with significant pharmaceutical and financial experience came together to discuss creative ways to address this issue. From those discussions was conceived a hybrid partnership between a for-profit pharmaceutical company and a nonprofit charitable foundation. This unique, cooperative model became the basis for our social enterprise―OWP Pharmaceuticals and the ROW Foundation.
By working together and focusing our efforts on people living in under-resourced areas, OWP Pharmaceuticals and the ROW Foundation can help bring hope, justice and relief from suffering to millions of epilepsy patients and their families around the world.
The business model for OWP Pharmaceuticals is very different from Big Pharma models, especially a traditional startup Pharma company. The unique combination of a “for profit” and “not for profit” company working together is not designed to maximize profits or to be sold to a larger pharmaceutical company. It is built to maximize the treatment of epilepsy globally through profits generated by OWP, which are used by the ROW Foundation for humanitarian purposes.
Nearly 80% of people with epilepsy live in under-developed regions, with about 75% of them not having access to epilepsy diagnosis and treatment. The knowledge and medicines already exist to bring hope and a brighter future to millions. Addressing this disparity and injustice through our strategic partnership and intentional action is why we exist.
OWP Pharmaceuticals enjoys a heartfelt, strategic and innovative relationship with the ROW Foundation. Together they form a concerted organization with shared goals and values that result in true Pharmaceutical Social Enterprise. OWP uses commercial success for the common good by supporting humanitarian projects rather than maximizing profits.
OWP Pharmaceuticals delivers quality branded generic epilepsy medications that are replicable and fairly priced. Our strategic focus is to support neurologists and patients in the U.S. with beneficial products and to use the majority of the profits to provide resources for those living with epilepsy in under-resourced areas of the world, by donating to the ROW Foundation.
OWP Pharmaceuticals was founded on drastically different values than most companies. It is not to maximize profits for shareholders, but instead to harness the power and efficiency of the free market to make the world a better place. We refer to this as Social Enterprise 2.0. We designed a two-track solution to reach our goals; a market-based company to harness the marketplace and a not-for-profit organization to direct this financial power to needy parts of the world.
We are committed to excellence in all that we do. This means that best practices will always be a key benchmark. The linkage between the two organizations gives us the best of both worlds. Under its Corporate By-Laws, OWP is obligated to contribute the maximum charitable deduction allowed each year under IRS rules to the ROW Foundation. In addition to the annual charitable contribution, ROW has a “profit interest” in OWP. This profit interest legally requires that OWP distribute a majority of its annual dividends to the ROW Foundation.
The ROW Foundation is not a short-term solution to a long-term problem. OWP is the sustainable, ongoing economic engine that financially underwrites the ROW Foundation’s programs. As a shareholder of OWP, the Foundation is assured of its funding source long-term and as the company grows, so does the charitable work of ROW. Because the ROW Foundation is a shareholder of OWP Pharmaceuticals, this income is stable, dependable and under the control of the ROW Foundation Board of Directors.
Our mantra “One World. One Standard” states our goal. We want to minimize the injustice that exists when persons in wealthy countries like the U.S. have ready access to medical and pharmaceutical care while those in under-resourced areas don’t. For example, a disorder like epilepsy can successfully be treated with low-cost generic medications about 70% of the time. But an epilepsy patient living in Africa has only a 10% chance of ever being properly diagnosed and treated―of ever receiving an inexpensive and effective medication.
We believe there is one world and there should be one standard for the diagnosis and treatment of epilepsy. Granted, the world is filled with inequity and injustices, and the treatment of epilepsy is just one of them. But it’s an inequity we are working to address. We envision a future when life-giving epilepsy medications and other treatments will be available to all people, at all times, in all places.
A “brand” medication is the agent that is the first on the market to receive FDA approval for that drug class. After the original patent on the brand medication expires, generic products deemed therapeutically equivalent by the FDA are allowed to be developed and marketed.
Generic medications have to be within 80-125% of the original branded agent specifications to receive FDA approval. Branded generics are products that use the same criteria as the original branded agent at a significantly lower cost than the brand-name medication. Unlike most generics, branded generics have a specific name and must be written “DAW” (Dispense As Written – or appropriate language required by state).
Branded generic medications provide the replicability of the original pharmaceutical agent at a significant savings to the patient. Since they are branded products, they give physicians and patients the assurance of getting the same medication from the same manufacturer, prescription after prescription, as they can be prescribed as “Dispense as Written” (DAW – or appropriate language required by state). Also, when OWP branded generics are prescribed and purchased, a portion of the profits benefits the diagnosis, treatment and education of epilepsy patients globally through our partnership with the ROW Foundation.
OWP Pharmaceuticals’ strategic partner, the ROW Foundation, provides funding to nonprofit organizations that carry out epilepsy-related projects. These organizations are chosen for their proven ability to manage successful projects. Working cooperatively benefits all those involved and allows the ROW Foundation to fulfill its charitable purpose in the most effective and efficient way possible.
The ROW Foundation does not consider unsolicited funding proposals. They selectively invite organizations to submit project proposals, and if they’re interested in working together they will first establish an organizational relationship.
Send an initial email to the ROW Foundation Administrator, Paul Regan, via the ROW Foundation website (www.rowpharma.org). Introduce yourself and your organization and let him know what you’re doing to address epilepsy in under-served areas. Tell him a little about your plans for the future. Include any brochures and materials that describe your organization.
He will acknowledge your email and add you to the ROW Foundation database. If there are compatible purposes and objectives, the ROW Foundation will request additional information to gain a deeper understanding of your organizational goals and objectives. Once evaluated, ROW may request a formal funding proposal.
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