Access for All: World Health Day 2019
“…I realized I had spent my life largely ignorant to a privilege I had taken for granted, the privilege of receiving medical treatment when I was sick.” – Celine Pourmoradi, Volunteer, Clinic by the Bay (grantee of Enhancing Access2Care, program supported by Volunteers in Medicine, Direct Relief and Teva)
Imagine not being able to make a trip to the doctor’s office or pick up your life-saving prescription at a nearby pharmacy. This is the reality for too many. According to the World Health Organization (WHO), at least one of every two people globally lack access to critical health services. On World Health Day, April 7, Teva is proud to support the WHO in elevating the importance of access to quality healthcare and medicines for people around the world.
Every day, we work to improve access, beginning with our goal to offer affordable medicines. This commitment is highlighted in our recently-published Position on Access to Medicines. Generics have reduced costs for governments, healthcare service organizations and patients, while making quality treatment a reality for millions. For example, generic medicines delivered $265B in savings to the US healthcare system in 20171. They also save the National Health Service (NHS) more than £13 billion in the UK each year2.
Teva is the world’s largest manufacturer of generic medicines and a leading supplier of those on the WHO’s Essential Medicines List (EML), which includes important medicines for addressing key healthcare needs, a major component of primary healthcare. For example, we manufacture 92% of essential cardiovascular treatments (36 of 39) and 84% of essential cancer treatments (42 of 50) on the EML3. Our participation in global tenders helps supply generics to society’s most vulnerable populations, while also bringing value to our business. In 2018, we supplied more than 70,000 packs of immunosuppressant medication to the Pan American Health Organization.
Through ongoing partnerships, including with Direct Relief, Operation Blessing International, Universal Heart and Brother’s Brother Foundation, Teva’s medicines have been provided to underserved populations in more than 80 countries. Most recently, in partnership with the Ethiopian Pharmaceutical Fund Supply Agency, Direct Relief and Access to Childhood Cancer Essentials (ACCESS), Teva provided an emergency supply of 13 essential cancer medicines from the WHO’s EML—more than 17,000 vials—to treat children with cancer in Ethiopia4.
Teva’s partnerships also extend beyond our portfolio. In Russia, Teva established a patient support program to provide access to asthma treatments not covered by a reimbursement program. Enhancing Access2Care, a two-year program created in partnership with Direct Relief and Volunteers in Medicine (VIM), supports the VIM clinics with delivery of primary and preventive health services for patients with multiple chronic conditions in the US. Teva also provides ongoing funding to the VIM national office to help start new clinics and provide ongoing assistance to the clinic network. According to Sasha Bianchi, Executive Director, VIM national office, “with Teva’s support, VIM has continued to spread a proven model of healthcare delivery for America’s uninsured to communities across the country. Seventeen new VIM clinics have opened since our partnership began in 2014. Hundreds of thousands of people, many of whom have never received consistent medical care, obtained free services within our network of 88 VIM clinics.”
In the UK, where healthcare is provided free to all residents, the NHS is under pressure due to increasing demand for care from the growing and aging population. Teva UK Limited supports the NHS in optimizing spending, freeing up funds to help patients access care and treatment. Without generic manufacturers like Teva, its drug spending would approximately double5.
Enhancing access to quality care and medicines requires efforts and partnerships across sectors, including government, humanitarian organizations, non-governmental organizations, healthcare professionals, healthcare service providers and pharmaceutical companies. While we all work to improve lives every day, World Health Day is a reminder of the road we still have ahead of us. Together, we strive to help ensure no one is left behind.
For more information on Teva’s efforts to contribute to healthy communities, please see our latest Social Impact Report.
To read more, download materials or find out how you can take action on World Health Day, visit