‘Ensure healthy lives and promote well-being for all at all ages’, is one of the Sustainable Development Goals ratified in September 2015 by the United Nations. These goals set a large number of ambitious targets to be achieved by 2030. They all recognize health as a driver of global economic growth.
Bayer is committed to the principles of sustainable development. With our products we aim to improve people's quality of life. In this context, we are always looking for ways to enable people to share the fruits of innovation, regardless of where they come from or how much they earn.
In addition to our philanthropic activities, Bayer also develops commercially viable concepts for achieving this goal. These concepts are based on the pillars of the company's know-how and its specific product portfolio.
Enabling self-determined family planning at affordable prices and reducing maternal and infant mortality are key objectives of our engagement.
For example, as a market leader in hormonal contraceptives, Bayer now has nearly 50 years of expertise in this field. We supply our contraceptives to partners in international development cooperation at a preferential price. In addition, with innovative collaborations in the field of family planning we have, together with our partners, developed models that sustainably improve access to hormonal contraceptives in developing countries.
But, in addition, we also need education, counseling and training for health care providers and advocacy work. For this reason Bayer initiates targeted dialogs with stakeholders in politics, industry, and healthcare at a local, national, and an international level. We are committed to partnerships, not only in access programs but also in educational programs and initiatives.
Neglected tropical diseases threaten 1.4 billion people worldwide, primarily the poorest of the poor in developing and threshold countries. Since 2012, ten of the most neglected of this diseases have been at the focus of a global initiative. Together with WHO and its partners and the countries concerned, Bayer shares the goal to control or even eliminate these diseases by 2020.
For more than ten years now, we have been supplying the WHO free of charge with two of our active substances against Chagas disease and African sleeping sickness. Both diseases are caused by parasites that are transmitted by insects or bugs (so-called vectors).
A clinical study is currently investigating a formulation that can be better dosed for treating children with Chagas disease, who are especially at risk. In a product development partnership with the Drugs for Neglected Diseases initiative (DNDi) we investigate whether an active substance currently used in veterinary medicine, is also effective in patients with river blindness. Such a development would mean a new treatment for river blindness and greatly shorten treatment times for this disease.
In the fight against these vector-transmitted tropical diseases, Bayer is using its expertise as a life-science company. We are promoting an integrated strategy to fight NTDs providing medicines and resources for education and awareness as well as prevention by controlling the vectors.