Around the world, millions of people lack access to medicines and other forms of health care. Access to medicines is a complex global issue with different manifestations depending on the location. Varying economic levels, government roles, and approaches to providing health care all influence the accessibility and effectiveness of medicines. Improving access to medicines is an enormous challenge. Tackling the issue requires the best efforts of governments, the private sector, multilateral institutions, and civil society.
At Lilly, we know we can’t solve all the problems, so we focus in areas where we can make a difference. Lilly will persevere in its mission to discover and develop new medicines that address important health needs. Without innovative drugs, the full promise of good health cannot be realized.
Lilly knows that pricing of our medicines should not only reflect the value they deliver as well as enable future research and development, but should also incorporate access to medicines considerations. Internationally, Lilly partners with governments to identify appropriate solutions to improve access to medicines in developing and less-developed countries. These solutions might include donations of cash and products for patient assistance programs, international humanitarian causes, and other charitable endeavors, as well as public–private partnerships. Lilly identifies business solutions that we believe will deliver a measurable, positive impact on patient care and that are designed to provide long-term solutions to specifically address limits in the infrastructure of developing countries.
Lilly believes health systems that allow differential pricing of medicines can balance the reward for innovation with access/affordability for low income populations. This enables access and continued research and development, which benefits patients, public and private healthcare administrators, and industry. However, to be effective, differential pricing must be supported by a policy environment that is also free of reference pricing and prevents the diversion of discounted medicines to higher income markets.