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22 Biopharma Companies Partner and Launch First-of-its-kind Global Initiative to Address Rise of Non-Communicable Diseases

  • Global, multi-stakeholder collaboration, called Access Accelerated, to be delivered in partnership with World Bank Group and Union for International Cancer Control (UICC
  • Initial three-year commitment will catalyze, develop, measure and replicate sustainable programs in low and middle income countries
  • Collective funding of $50 million and increased individual company program commitments to address NCDs
Davos, Switzerland, January 18, 2017 — Today at the World Economic Forum, twenty-two leading biopharmaceutical companies launched Access Accelerated, a global initiative to advance access to non-communicable disease (NCD) prevention and care in low and middle income countries.

NCDs have reached a point of crisis, particularly in lower and middle income countries, where nearly 80 percent of NCD-related deaths occur. The goal of Access Accelerated, in partnership with the World Bank Group and the Union for International Cancer Control (UICC), is to work towards the United Nations Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) target to reduce premature deaths from NCDs by one-third by 2030. 


“Through the commitment and expertise of the Access Accelerated partners, we will work towards a shared vision where no person dies prematurely from a preventable, treatable disease,” said Ian Read, Chief Executive Officer of Pfizer and President of The International Federation of Pharmaceutical Manufacturers and Associations (IFPMA), on behalf of the initiative. “If the current trend in NCDs in low- and lower-middle income countries is not reversed, there is a real possibility we will undermine the progress we have made in health around the world. To reach our goal, we need to catalyze new partnerships, learn quickly and advance the resources and knowledge that will enable countries to tackle NCDs.”  

Building on more than 100 long-standing individual company investments to advance NCD care in developing countries, Access Accelerated will bring additional accountability and transparency to existing efforts while also placing a specific emphasis on addressing access barriers to NCD prevention, treatment and care. Efforts will be evaluated with the support of independent experts at Boston University to establish a framework for progress, measure effectiveness and deliver ongoing reporting.  

With the World Bank Group the initiative will identify solutions to address financing, regulatory and service delivery barriers at country level. Additionally, the World Bank Group will conduct pilots in primary care to improve NCD outcomes in several countries, with an initial focus on a country in Africa. 

“The rapid increase in NCDs in developing countries is a serious threat to our goal of improving the health of the world’s poorest citizens and achieving universal health coverage,” said Tim Evans, Senior Director of Health, Nutrition and Population at the World Bank Group. “Tackling this successfully will take coordinated effort by governments, civil society, the private sector and international partners. This new effort is an opportunity for all players to test and scale up innovative ways to deliver effective care for NCDs, with a strong focus on primary health care.”

In addition, the initiative plans to develop partnerships with organizations specializing in each of the major non-communicable diseases (NCDs), starting with cancer. As part of this effort, the coalition of companies will serve as a foundational partner of the UICC’s C/Can 2025: City Cancer Challenge (C/Can 2025), which also launched at the World Economic Forum. In 2017, C/Can 2025 will engage cities around the world with a population over 1 million to improve cancer treatment and care, working with specific ‘learning cities’ in low- and middle-income countries which require international support to develop effective, sustainable cancer care delivery for their citizens. Initial learning cities will include Cali, Colombia; Asuncion, Paraguay; and Yangon, Myanmar; with additional locations to be announced this year.

“C/Can 2025 strives towards a future where all cities can address the growing cancer burden they face and in low- and middle-income countries the international community can help put in place effective diagnostics and treatment to patients at risk of or diagnosed with cancer,” said Cary Adams, Chief Executive Officer at UICC. “By working with Access Accelerated we will be able to improve cancer survival rates everywhere.”

About Access Accelerated
Access Accelerated is a first-of-its-kind, multi-stakeholder collaboration focused on improving NCD care. Involving more than 20 biopharmaceutical companies, the initiative works with partners such as World Bank Group and the Union for International Cancer Control (UICC) to help overcome a variety of access barriers to NCD medicines in low-income and lower-middle income countries. Access Accelerated will support multi-stakeholder dialogue and begin on-the-ground work to improve NCD prevention, diagnosis and treatment.  

Contributing companies include: Almirall, Astellas, Bayer, Bristol-Myers Squibb, Celgene, Chugai, Daiichi Sankyo, Eisai, Eli Lilly and Company, EFPIA, GlaxoSmithKline, The International Federation of Pharmaceutical Manufacturers and Associations (IFPMA), Johnson & Johnson, JPMA, Menarini, Merck, MSD, Novartis, Pfizer, PhRMA, Roche, Sanofi, Shionogi, Sumitomo Dainippon, Takeda and UCB. IFPMA will act as the Secretariat for Access Accelerated. 

About Non-Communicable Diseases (NCDs)
NCDs, including cancers, cardiovascular diseases, chronic respiratory disease, diabetes and mental health disorders are the leading causes of death and disability worldwide. This places a double burden on communities and economies around the world already combating infectious diseases.

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