Eli Lilly and Company has announced the launch of a five-year, $30 million initiative to fight non-communicable diseases (NCDs) in developing nations.
The Lilly NCD Partnership will work to identify comprehensive, sustainable approaches to patient care, which, depending on local needs, may include everything from patient education and provider training to increased access to treatment. Working with groups such as the Hospital Israelita Albert Einstein and the Preventive Medicine Research Institute in Brazil; the Public Health Foundation of India, Project HOPE, and Population Services International; the Carlos Slim Health Institute in Mexico; and the Donald Woods Foundation in South Africa, Lilly will focus its initial efforts on diabetes in targeted communities. The founding partners are developing country-specific programs scheduled to launch in early 2012.
NCDs — including cardiovascular diseases, diabetes, cancer, and chronic respiratory diseases — disproportionately affect the economically disadvantaged, with 80 percent of all related deaths occurring in low- and middle-income countries. In 2008, NCDs were responsible for the deaths of thirty-six million people, representing 63 percent of all deaths globally, the World Health Organization reports.
"Non-communicable diseases are afflicting nations, communities, and families around the world, with the most vulnerable bearing most of the burden," said Lilly chairman, president, and CEO John C. Lechleiter. "We believe we have a responsibility — and are uniquely positioned — to assist in the global fight against these diseases. In partnership with leading health organizations, Lilly will contribute its deep expertise and the company's broad research capabilities to help find solutions for these pressing societal needs."