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Fasken Enhances Life Sciences Practice Group to Meet Clients’ Needs

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[Johannesburg] – The Fasken office in Johannesburg, South Africa welcomes Martha Smit to our expanding Life Sciences practice group.


Qualified as both a registered nurse and lawyer, Martha brings compelling experience in the legal, medical and pharmaceutical industries.


Having practised as a litigation attorney and legal advisor in the corporate sector as well as coordinating clinical data trials for an international pharmaceutical company, she is able to bring the best of both worlds in finding innovative solutions for clients and businesses in the Life Sciences area.


Martha’s practical experience of having worked across a number of professional health bodies and corporates has afforded her first-hand knowledge and an in-depth understanding of the challenges, opportunities and regulatory environments of this sector. 


Martha states: “Pharmaceutical companies have an increasing burden to address and comply with regulatory requirements which often span multiple geographies, markets, businesses, development activities and functions.


The challenge particularly falls on the compliance aspect of the processes in clinical research, as the pharmaceutical companies persist in innovation and exploration during developmental stages of their products.


Developments within the industry recently are indicative, especially in the medical devices field, that the “think outside the box” principle has been replaced with a “there is no box” belief. With this level of innovation, exploration and accelerated invention, regulatory compliance has been the black sheep in so far it has impeded the progress some within the research industry believes could already have been achieved had they not been expected to navigate the administrative red tape they are often confronted with.”


Blaize Vance, the Managing Partner for Africa, reinforces the timing of Martha’s appointment, he shares “we recognise that our clients within the pharmaceutical, medical devices and medical industries are looking for comprehensive solutions, and a broad and in-depth understanding of regulatory and legislative developments in their respective markets; Martha’s expertise match these needs and she is well positioned to advise clients and ensure they navigate legal challenges in a very demanding market”.

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