Polls and rankings seem to be everywhere in the news. One published today--the 2012 Access to Medicine (ATM) Index--is worth a closer look.
It is cause for celebration here at GSK because we were ranked highest in the index, which evaluates pharmaceutical companies on their efforts to improve access to medicine in low-income and lower middle income countries. The ATM Index is a major initiative of the Access to Medicine Foundation, an international not-for-profit organisation.
It is cause for a much wider celebration because the foundation is seeing companies "really raising the bar" and stepping up efforts to get medicines to those who need them, regardless of where they live.
The Foundation found that:
17 of 20 companies performed better in 2012 than at the time of the last index in 2010. This happened at a time when the Foundation also raised its expectations.
Companies are developing more medicines for more diseases that disproportionately affect the world's poor
More companies are using tiered pricing to lower prices for certain countries or specific populations.
Improving access to medicine is core to GSK's overall mission and strategy. Over the last five years we have made changes to our business model, expanding to more countries and making our medicines and vaccines more available and affordable.
Here in the US, we provide some of the most generous patient assistance programs in the industry. In 2011, more than 478,000 patients here received GSK medicines and vaccines worth $115 million.
We will read closely the report's recommendations and invite you to do the same. You can find the full report at www.atmindex.org
Read more about what GSK does to increase access to medicine.