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Access to Medicine Index 2016

The Index analyses 20 of the world’s largest research-based pharmaceutical companies on how they make medicines, vaccines and diagnostics more accessible in low- and middle-income countries.

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In 2016, the Index found moderate progress in the pharmaceutical industry’s efforts to improve access to medicine.

  • Leaders see business rationale in investing in access
  • Two companies have made significant leaps in performance: AstraZeneca and Takeda
  • All companies improved in at least one measure


2016 Access to Medicine Index launched in UK at Houses of Parliament

06 Dec 2016
On Tuesday 6 December, members of the UK parliament co-hosted the UK launch of the 2016 Access to Medicine Index. The event focused on UK-based pharmaceutical companies and the role of government in improving access to medicine for the world’s poorest.

2016 Index: from findings to change

17 Nov 2016
Following the publication of the 2016 Access to Medicine Index, the Foundation team has begun a series of meetings and events to discuss its findings and the new ranking of pharmaceutical companies. This includes a panel discussion at the FT Pharmaceutical and Biotechnology Conference in London, followed by investor meetings in London, Paris, Basel and New York.

New analysis: large pharmaceutical companies are developing five HIV/AIDS medicines for children

01 Dec 2016
For World AIDS Day 2016, the Access to Medicine Foundation has analysed the pharmaceutical pipelines for HIV/AIDS from 20 of the world’s largest pharmaceutical companies. Out of 51 high-burden diseases and conditions, HIV/AIDS is one of the five diseases getting the most R&D attention. Today, they have five projects in the pipeline aimed at children.

Report cards

Detailed overview of each company’s performance in the Index, including breakdowns of their product portfolios and R&D pipelines.

Best and innovative practices

Browse the 57 company activities identified by the Index that represent either an innovative or best-in-class practice.

“Pharmaceutical companies, as the innovators and producers of life-saving medicine,
act early in the value chain. When they take positive steps, the impact on access can be huge.”

Jayasree K. Iyer, Executive Director, Access to Medicine Foundation.

key finding:
Research & Development

Collaborative research models appear effective in engaging the industry in developing urgently needed products with low commercial potential

The Index examines 22 diseases and conditions for which the G-FINDER tool from Policy Cures has identified a need for new products with limited commercial incentive. Companies are addressing 18 of these diseases, with most activity focusing

key finding:
Product Deployment

Good practice in making products affordable and available is limited

The Index analyses how pharmaceutical companies deploy medicines, diagnostics and vaccines once they have emerged from the pipeline. It finds that companies generally do not systematically target populations with the highest needs

key finding:
Governance & Compliance

Companies increasingly view access to medicine as a way to develop their business in emerging markets

Companies are refining the ways they organise efforts to increase access to medicine. Most (17) now have a detailed access-to-medicine strategy. AbbVie, Astellas and Daiichi Sankyo are the exceptions. While they have approaches for increasing access to medicine, they have not

key finding:
Capacity Building

Six companies systematically match activities to local priorities when strengthening health systems

The Index has identified six pharmaceutical companies that are consistently addressing independently prioritized gaps through their capacity building programmes. These companies are building local capacities

The Access to Medicine Foundation and its publications are funded by