Pfizer Receives Michigan's Highest Award for Workplace Safety and Health Excellence

Contact: LARA Communications 517-373-9280
Agency: Licensing and Regulatory Affairs

December 8, 2011 - Pfizer Inc received renewal of its MVPP Star Award, the state's highest workplace safety and health award, at a formal ceremony today from the Michigan Occupational Safety and Health Administration (MIOSHA) for its manufacturing operations in Kalamazoo County.  The MIOSHA program is part of the Michigan Department of Licensing and Regulatory Affairs (LARA).

"We are honored to recognize Pfizer today for its exemplary corporate commitment to workplace safety and health," said LARA Director Steven H. Hilfinger.  "Pfizer demonstrates a corporate culture where workplace safety and health is a top priority.  This company recognizes that a safe workplace provides the foundation for a productive workplace."

MIOSHA established the Michigan Voluntary Protection Program (MVPP) program in 1996 to recognize employers actively working toward achieving excellence in workplace safety and health.  Since 1999, Michigan has recognized 27 MVPP Star companies.  This is the most prestigious safety and health award given in Michigan.  Pfizer Kalamazoo first received MVPP Star approval in March 2008. This is the company's first renewal.

"The recertification of the MIOSHA Star Award is a testament to every Pfizer colleague who strives for excellence in environmental, health and safety every day," said Tony Maddaluna, President, Pfizer Global Supply.  "We are each committed to doing all that's necessary to maintain Pfizer's high standards."

Pfizer colleagues have established an inclusive safety culture that addresses the needs of both employees and contractors through a commitment to four areas of focus:

  • Watch out and care for each other;
  • Spend five minutes prior to performing a task to assess the task, identify potential hazards and take action to prevent injury;
  • Participate in safety team and safety-related activities;
  • Continuously improve colleague safety awareness.

"This recognition is a reminder that putting safety first benefits our colleagues as we continue to drive our best-in-class environmental, health and safety program," said Frank Foley, Site Leader, Pfizer Global Supply, Kalamazoo Operations.

The Kalamazoo manufacturing site is the largest in the Pfizer Global Supply network and employs approximately 2,100 workers. The MIOSHA review team consisted of Doug Kimmel, Team Leader and CET. 

MVPP Specialist; Lee Jay Kueppers, CET Senior Safety Consultant; Micshall Patrick, CET Senior Safety Consultant; and Curtis Johnson, Senior Industrial Hygienist.

The Pfizer incidence rate and lost work day rate are well below the National Bureau of Labor Statistics average for their NAICS code 325412 - Pharmaceutical Preparation Manufacturing.  The rates must be below the industry average to qualify for continued MVPP STAR status.

Areas of excellence include:

  • Safety Training Videos - A team of colleagues produced nine W.A.L.T. (Working, Acting, Living, and Talking Safety) training videos that were presented to all Kalamazoo site colleagues during 2010. The team wrote the scripts and filmed the videos.  Colleagues who appeared in the videos discussed their experiences and views on safety.  The videos were so widely accepted that leadership has asked this team to continue the training modules into 2011.
  • Management Commitment/Employee Involvement - Management at all levels of the site is actively involved in and supportive of the safety and health management system.  Employees are engaged in safety through promotions such as the hazard reporting Good Catch program, production of in-house safety videos, safety teams and more.
  • Contractor Safety - The site has a department and staff dedicated to operations and oversight of the extensive and detailed contractor safety program.

"Pfizer's continued recognition in the MVPP program, and the trust and cooperation upon which it is based, demonstrate that implementing an exemplary safety and health-management system is not only the right thing to do, it is also admirable and sustainable," said MIOSHA Director Doug Kalinowski.

A division of Pfizer, Inc., Pfizer Global Supply presently operates 87 manufacturing sites and manages 188 distribution centers globally with a workforce of more than 30,000 colleagues.  It is one of the world's preeminent biopharmaceutical and animal health supply organizations.

Pfizer Inc: Working together for a healthier world™

At Pfizer, we apply science and our global resources to improve health and well-being at every stage of life.  We strive to set the standard for quality, safety and value in the discovery, development and manufacturing of medicines for people and animals.  Our diversified global health care portfolio includes human and animal biologic and small molecule medicines and vaccines, as well as nutritional products and many of the world's best-known consumer products.  Every day, Pfizer colleagues work across developed and emerging markets to advance wellness, prevention, treatments and cures that challenge the most feared diseases of our time.  Consistent with our responsibility as the world's leading biopharmaceutical company, we also collaborate with health care providers, governments and local communities to support and expand access to reliable, affordable health care around the world.  For more than 150 years, Pfizer has worked to make a difference for all who rely on us.  To learn more about our commitments, please visit us at