Novartis associates in Slovenia participate in second global health and well-being initiative

In the Be Healthy Celebration Week Lek associates worked out and took up a culinary challenge with Petra Majdič

  • Novartis Group-wide health and well-being initiative launched in 2011, provides opportunities for associates to take control of their personal health and help prevent future health issues.
    • Associates at Lek, a Sandoz Company, were among those across more than 50 countries participating in the second Novartis Be Healthy Celebration Week.
  • According to the World Economic Forum (WEF), workplace health and well-being programs addressing lifestyle changes can prevent up to 40% of non-communicable diseases (NCDs) such as cardiovascular diseases, cancers and lung disorders.
  • The health and welfare of associates is a top priority for Novartis and a natural extension of the company purpose, to “care and cure”.
    • Be Healthy builds upon the company’s tradition of providing health and well-being programs for associates.
    • Initiative stresses the importance of a healthy workforce to drive innovation.
19. 9. 2012

Novartis Group Company associates across more than 50 countries participated in the second annual Novartis Be Healthy Celebration Week from September 10-14, 2012. During the week, Novartis Group sites were offering many opportunities to help associates take control of their personal health. This second annual Be Healthy Celebration Week was organised also in all Lek sites throughout Slovenia, hosting our Olympian Petra Majdič, who joined the associates for a physical workout and then took up with them a culinary challenge.

Be Healthy is a group-wide health promotion initiative for our affiliates worldwide to support healthy lifestyles, share knowledge and prevent injury and disease that could impact associates’ personal and professional lives. Be Healthy provides voluntary opportunities for associates to take control of their personal health. »The Be Healthy program has been a great success in its first year, and Novartis sites around the world have launched many new programs to improve health and well-being as a result of the initiative,” said Joseph Jimenez, CEO of Novartis, and added: »Therefore I was really looking forward to this second Celebration Week with more than 50 countries participating worldwide.«

Move, Choose, Know, Manage

Novartis is focusing on prevention programs in Be Healthy in order to help prevent a rapid increase of non-communicable diseases with various workplace health and well-being programs addressing lifestyle changes. Each day of Be Healthy Celebration Week will focus on one of Be Healthy’s four pillars – Move, Choose, Know and Manage.

»With the Be Healthy initiative and Be Healthy Celebration Week Lek builds upon our several decades long tradition of providing health and well-being programs for associates. Through our existing activities we have developed a program which enables the associates to regularly monitor their health condition. The global Novartis initiative enabled us to bring together all programs with regard to associates’ health to date in one place and to additionally expand some of them. This year, for the second time in a row, we organised Be Healthy Celebration Week into which we incorporate our entire effort to support healthy lifestyles among our associates. Both this and last year the response of our associates was excellent,« stressed Vojmir Urlep, President of Board of Management of Lek, a Sandoz company, at the occasion of the Be Healthy Celebration Week.

Cooking challenge with Petra Majdič

One day of the Be Healthy Celebration Week was dedicated to healthy meals and snacks (Choose). The associates could choose from an additional range of healthy and balanced meals at all Lek sites. A cooking challenge with Petra Majdič attracted special attention. At each Lek site two associates cooked a meal according their own recipe from healthy ingredients selected by Petra Majdič. Petra, whilst carrying out her own cooking, talked about the importance of healthy eating, giving away some secrets about the diet of athletes and ideas on healthy snacks and answered employees’ questions.

Besides healthy eating the employees could participate during Be Healthy Celebration Week in various sports activities (Move), e.g. taking part in a morning workout in the open air with Petra Majdič, together with activities on fitness machines, and went hiking. Free measurement of key numbers such as blood pressure, blood sugar, cholesterol and body mass index were also carried out in the Celebration Week. In addition, the associates had the opportunity to test their lung function with a spirometer (Know). A special day was dedicated to raising awareness about stress control (Manage). During the whole week, the associates were encouraged to use stairs more frequently and to limit the use of salt in their diets. Also drawn to the attention was the possibility of free psychological counselling by phone for associates at all Slovenian sites.

About Be Healthy initiative

Be Healthy has a broad reach within the Novartis Group. In 2011, 76 of the largest Novartis sites across 32 countries were involved, reaching 80% of affiliates’ associates. In 2012, the initiative was expanded to 100 additional sites and has now reached 95% of associates.

The Novartis Be Healthy Celebration Week is taking place in the same month as the World Health Organization-sponsored “Wellness Week.”

Novartis is a member of the World Economic Forum (WEF) Workplace Wellness Alliance which puts an emphasis on health and well-being. The WEF alliance is a response to the growing burden of NCDs, the chief cause of death globally and a significant contributor to global healthcare costs. The World Health Organization recently set a global target to reduce NCDs by 25% by the year 2025, and Be Healthy is the contribution of Novartis toward this goal.

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Lek, a Sandoz company, is one of the pillars of leading world generics company Sandoz. Its role within Sandoz is to act as: a global development center for products and technologies; a global manufacturing center for active pharmaceutical ingredients and medicines; a competence center for the development of vertically integrated products; a Sandoz competence center in the field of development and manufacturing of biosimilar products; and, a supply center for the markets of Central and Eastern Europe (CEE), South East Europe (SEE) and Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS), and it is responsible for sales on the Slovenian market. For further information please visit

Sandoz, a Division of the Novartis group, is a global leader in the field of generic pharmaceuticals, offering a wide array of high-quality, affordable products that are no longer protected by valid and enforceable third-party patents. Sandoz has a portfolio of approximately 1000 compounds and sells its products in about 130 countries. Key product groups include cardiovascular medicines, anti-infectives, treatments for central nervous system and alimentary tract disorders, oncology and respiratory therapies, as well as medications for blood and blood forming organ disorders. Sandoz develops, produces and markets these medicines along with pharmaceutical and biotechnological active substances. In addition to strong organic growth in recent years, Sandoz has made a series of acquisitions including Lek (Slovenia), Sabex (Canada), Hexal (Germany), Eon Labs (US), EBEWE Pharma (Austria), and Oriel Therapeutics (US). In 2011, Sandoz employed more than 24,000 people (full-time equivalents) worldwide and achieved net sales of USD 9.5 billion for the full year. For more information, please visit
Sandoz is on Twitter. Sign up to follow @Sandoz_global at

Novartis provides innovative healthcare solutions that address the evolving needs of patients and societies. Headquartered in Basel, Switzerland, Novartis offers a diversified portfolio to best meet these needs: innovative medicines, eye care, cost-saving generic pharmaceuticals, preventive vaccines and diagnostic tools, over-the-counter and animal health products. Novartis is the only global company with leading positions in these areas. In 2011, the Group’s continuing operations achieved net sales of USD 58.6 billion, while approximately USD 9.6 billion (USD 9.2 billion excluding impairment and amortization charges) was invested in R&D throughout the Group. Novartis Group companies employ approximately 124,000 full-time-equivalent associates and operate in more than 140 countries around the world. For more information, please visit
Novartis is on Twitter. Sign up to follow @Novartis at

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This press release contains statements and conclusions based on projections of Lek’s future business operations. These estimates are derived from the best information currently available. In case these forecasts prove unreliable, the actual results could prove different from those projected.

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For additional information contact:
Katarina Klemenc
Corporate Communications
Lek Pharmaceuticals d. d.
Phone: +386 1 580 22 43
Fax: +386 1 580 24 32