NEW YORK: Porter Novelli has brought on Dr. Doug Elwood and Suzannah Palinkas to serve as SVPs in the New York and Washington, DC health and wellness groups, respectively.
In the newly created position of SVP and medical advisor, Elwood is reporting directly to Paul George, global director of health at Porter. Palinkas, who is also taking on a new role at the firm, is reporting to Rosemary McGillan, EVP of health and social marketing.
"[Elwood] and [Palinkas] bring very different attributes to the table," George said, adding that "ensuring we’re hiring people who understand the patient voice" is at the core of what the firm does.
"It’s about finding that patient voice," he said. "That’s the emphasis for us."
Before joining Porter Novelli, Elwood, a board-certified physician, worked at Bristol-Myers Squibb, where he started as strategy and communications lead in medical affairs, and then became digital and innovation strategy lead for the diabetes franchise in global commercialization.
Elwood also previously served as a VP and medical advisor for the health and wellness practice at Widmeyer Communications, working on clients such as Pfizer, the John Theurer Cancer Center, the Brain Injury Research Institute, Nestle, and the American Foundation for the Blind.
He is a part-time faculty member at NYU Langone Medical Center, where he directs a patient and healthcare provider engagement program.
Most recently, Palinkas was a VP at Ketchum. Prior to that, she supervised communications for GlaxoSmithKline’s oncology franchise, as well as the lead product in the company’s breast cancer treatment portfolio.
Over the course of her career, Palinkas has developed communications strategies for companies such as Pfizer, Eli Lilli, Wyeth Pharmaceuticals, and Solvay Pharmaceuticals. She has also managed medical professional and consumer education programs for the American Gastroenterological Association, the American College of Cardiology, and the American Society for Cataract and Refractive Surgery.
This story was updated on May 2 with comment from George.