Siemens Healthineers Greece Compliance Manager shares expertise with Kathimerini
Georgios Papakostas, Head of Compliance, Data Privacy and Export and Customs Control Siemens Healthineers Greece, Cyprus, Malta.
Georgios Papakostas, Compliance Manager of Siemens Healthineers Greece, shares with Kathimerini some thoughts on how the Siemens Healthineers compliance system is built and what are the benefits for an organization that has a compliance system in place.
What are the components of the compliance system at Siemens Healthineers?
The Siemens Healthineers compliance system consists of three levels: Prevent, Detect and Respond. We focus on preventive measures such as communication, training and clear regulations valid for everyone. Critical business transactions are thoroughly reviewed for compliance risks, prior to execution. Should there still be violations of applicable law, we will investigate the circumstances thoroughly in a fair process and then take appropriate disciplinary action, if deemed necessary.
The Siemens Healthineers compliance system covers the areas below:
Is a code of ethics established at Siemens Healthineers?
The heart and soul of our compliance system are the Business Conduct Guidelines, which establish binding rules of conduct for all employees towards each other and the integrity of our business. All Siemens Healthineers should understand compliance as part of their own job; management being responsible for the proper conduct of team members.
What about third parties? Is there a risk assessment approach?
We work with partners such as commercial agents, distributors and customs agents to sell products and services. Our goal is to ensure that all of our business partners work with a high level of transparency and integrity comparable to our own. Therefore, we carefully select our partners and achieve transparency through due diligence followed by ongoing training and monitoring. Our established company-wide internal business partner tool helps ensure that all processes are implemented and experienced without exception. In this sense, we have developed a code of conduct for suppliers based on the United Nations Global Compact and the principles of the International Labor Organization which is also reflected in our business conduct guidelines which are binding for all employees of Siemens Healthineers.
Are actions taken, initiatives launched or forces joined with other stakeholders to fight corruption?
We work with various interest groups to build an alliance against corruption. We approach and solve the problem from multiple angles with the ultimate goal of creating fair and equal market conditions – a “level playing field” – for all market participants and eliminating the temptations of corruption for all. We call it “Collective Action” at Siemens Healthineers, and it aims to provide more opportunities for cooperation with healthcare alliances, to improve the compliance environment and to benefit everyone – not just the players. market, but also healthcare professionals and patients. We do this for example by being a member of the professional association MedTech Europe and by actively working on the Code of Ethical Business Practice of MedTech Europe.
What about reporting a fault? Is there a whistleblower channel?
We provide multiple reporting channels for internal and external whistleblowers to notify us of potential compliance violations. “Let Us Know” is our secure channel for reporting non-compliant or otherwise problematic actions around the clock: online, anonymously if you wish, and in multiple languages, including Greek. We protect the identity of whistleblowers and follow up on those reports. In addition, employees and third parties may, confidentially and anonymously, report to the Siemens Healthineers Ombudsman any inappropriate business practices in the company that they observe.
What are the benefits of operating a compliance system?
The Α compliance system can help an organization minimize potential risks, establish trust with its customers, contribute to the development of the organization, avoid reputational damage and ensure the sustainability of the organization.