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Reports 22 May 2018

50 Years of Global
Health Progress


By Denise Delaney, Kate Newbury-Helps and Julien Butter

The International Federation of Pharmaceutical Manufacturers & Associations (IFPMA) represents the research-based pharmaceutical companies and associations across the globe. This report “50 Years of Global Health Progress”, marks IFPMA’s 50th anniversary, tracing global health progress over the past 50 years and looking forward to challenges and opportunities for the next 50 years.

The report takes on the challenge of summarising 50 years of progress through key milestones – showcasing the role of innovations as well as partnerships.

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The report takes on the challenge of summarising 50 years of progress through key milestones – showcasing the role of innovations as well as partnerships. In so doing, it provides a reflection on the importance of health to global development and the collaborative role of the industry, working as part of a health ecosystem to deliver progress. Health progress has been delivered by many actors playing their part, often together. What unites them is the patient. The report also acknowledges challenges the industry faces, the setbacks along the way and areas of unfinished business. Throughout, readers are reminded of the people behind the headlines – patients, researchers, doctors, health workers who have contributed to, and benefited from, global health progress.

The report brings to life the advances, partnerships and challenges through seven stories of progress.

  • Vaccines: Saving, protecting and enhancing lives.
  • HIV/AIDS: Overcoming one of the worst human pandemics.
  • Neglected Tropical Diseases, Malaria and TB: Thinking beyond traditional models.
  • Cancer: Persisting in research and innovation to deliver better patient outcomes.
  • Cardiovascular disease: Innovating for longer and better lives.
  • Diabetes: Improving quality of life through management of a complex disease.
  • Hepatitis C: Discovery to cure in 25 years.

The report takes the opportunity to look forward to the role of IFPMA and the industry in the next fifty years of progress. This includes the 2030 agenda, to which we know health is essential – and not just to SDG 3 on health and wellbeing. The report demonstrates the ways health is integral across the SDGs – from promoting access to health for the poor to tackle SDG1, to fostering healthier cities to deliver SDG 11. The report explore some of the opportunities and risks for global health over the next five decades – recognizing the importance of collaboration and dialogue to understand tackle these issues. These include health security, climate change, technology, and demographic and disease shifts.

The report concludes with a commitment from IFPMA to continue to innovate and partner with a shared goal to deliver better health for everyone, everywhere.

“The last 50 years has seen companies move to greater global accountability. The next 50 will be about further delivering on our purpose: putting patients first to deliver better health for everyone, everywhere.” – Thomas Cueni, IFPMA Director General

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