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Access Accelerated*1 is a global initiative aimed at improving access to non-communicable diseases (NCDs) prevention, diagnosis and treatment in low- and middle-income countries. More than 20 international pharmaceutical companies are partners in the program, working alongside organizations such as the World Bank, City Cancer Challenge Foundation, PATH, NCD Alliance and World Heart Federation. Astellas has participated in Access Accelerated since January 2017, which is when it was launched.
NCDs are any diseases not caused by human-to-human transmission of an infectious agent. Leading NCDs include cancer, cardiovascular disease, chronic respiratory disease and diabetes. Many NCDs are caused by unhealthy eating, lack of exercise, smoking or excessive drinking, and could be prevented by lifestyle improvement. NCDs are not just on the increase in developed countries, but the number of patients suffering from NCDs is also increasing in developing countries. The rising incidence of NCDs not only puts pressure on the healthcare budgets of developing countries, but also leads to economic losses when patients cannot work due to illness.
*1 For details about Access Accelerated, please visit the following website:
Under Access Accelerated, Astellas supports ACTION ON FISTULA™*2. Since this program began in 2014, 11 doctors who can perform surgery for obstetric fistula were trained, the fistula treatment network was established, and a system that provides routine surgery at multiple cooperating hospitals was prepared. As a result of this program, a total of over 6,200 obstetric fistula patients received surgery and their quality of life was improved. Furthermore, 22 support groups were established that take care of patients’ mental well-being, provide economic support and employment support so that patients who have received treatment can reintegrate into society.
Additionally, in the field of oncology, Astellas launched a new initiative in India structured according to patients’ income levels, with the aim of improving their access to its anticancer products since 2017. Moreover, Astellas supported City Cancer Challenge initiative at Cali city, Colombia. Astellas will continue to push ahead with activities that improve patients’ access to the prevention, diagnosis, and treatment of NCDs in low- and middle-income countries.
*2 ACTION ON FISTULA™: A program launched by the Fistula Foundation. Astellas Pharma Europe Ltd., which is a European subsidiary of Astellas, provided funds for the Fistula Foundation, aiming to treat a total of over 4,500 patients by 2020.
*3 At the end of the program, a total of 6,223 patients accessed fistula treatment.
Achievements of Access Accelerated
Access Accelerated annual reports introduce achievements of Access Accelerated. Since its launch on January 18, 2017, over 100 programs have carried out newly or continued by participated companies. ACTION ON FISTULA™, a program to transform the lives of obstetric fistula patients in Kenya, is also introduced in this report.
Through participation in Access Accelerated, Astellas is working to achieve the United Nations Sustainable Development Goal to reduce premature deaths from NCDs by one-third by 2030, in collaboration with various partners.