The Lilly NCD Partnership

Non-communicable diseases such as diabetes, cancer, and heart disease are placing an increasing burden on patients, healthcare systems, and economies. According to the World Health Organization (WHO), NCDs account for 63 percent of global deaths and nearly 80 percent of deaths in low- to middle-income countries. Despite this, the Center for Global Development reports that, from 2001 to 2008, spending on NCDs in developing countries was less than 3 percent of all global health assistance.

Few successful models for NCD treatment and care currently exist in the developing world. In 2011, we announced an investment of $30 million over five years to create The Lilly NCD Partnership, a signature program designed to research new, comprehensive approaches to treat NCDs in the developing world. We are working with world-class health organizations in Brazil, India, Mexico and South Africa—countries that suffer a large burden of NCDs—to develop effective, efficient and sustainable programs that can meaningfully improve health outcomes for those in need.

As we build the partnership, we will report what works, what doesn’t, and advocate for the best solutions we find. The first phase of the partnership will focus on diabetes, an area where Lilly has deep expertise and a history of pioneering therapies. Specifically, we will work to:

  • Strengthen diabetes care capabilities at primary care health clinics,
  • Improve system efficiencies so that more patients are served,
  • Increase appropriate use and medication compliance for improved patient outcomes, and
  • Replicate the efforts in similar clinical environments.


"Through the new Lilly NCD Partnership, Lilly is making a major move toward the concept of creating ‘shared value.’ By investing in the healthcare infrastructure of countries that have the highest burden of diabetes, they are leveraging their assets and expertise to both drive business results and improve public health. This program has the potential to create significant impact for the company and for millions around the world. It represents a promising new approach for Lilly, and the industry."

Mark Kramer

Founder and Managing Director, FSG, and Senior Fellow, Corporate Social Responsibility Initiative, Harvard Kennedy School