Biopharmaceutical leader Takeda recently released its Access to Medicines Progress Report 2022, highlighting the company’s efforts in broadening access to life-changing medicines and vaccines, with a special focus on low to middle-income countries.
Over the past two years, the COVID-19 pandemic has shown the disproportionate effects of diseases, especially for LMICS, with patients experiencing even more challenges in getting access to the medicines they need. Not to mention its impact on healthcare infrastructures, limiting the ability to invest in broadening access to innovative medicines.
Takeda’s latest Access to Medicines Report details the company’s Access to Medicines approach, which is: Patient first, providing access based on the patient’s individual circumstances and unique needs; Holistic, utilizing an end-to-end approach from education to screening, diagnosis, treatment and aftercare; and Collaborative, placing importance in building and supporting healthcare systems through partnerships.
The report also provides updates on the progress of their current Access to Medicines Programs globally, including programs in the Philippines.
In the Philippines, the cost of medical treatment for serious illnesses can be financially prohibitive for patients and their families. To help address this gap, Takeda utilized several approaches – tiered pricing, which allows for price adjustments relative to a country’s income levels and other factors, and Patient Access Programs (“PAP”), which help patients with limited means to obtain Takeda’s innovative treatments.
This approach was utilized to help reimagine lymphoma care in the Philippines, where many patients are unable to get the treatment they need due to a lack of early and proper diagnosis.
Patients in the Philippines living with Hodgkin lymphoma, one of the most prevalent 14 cancers in the country, make an average of between five and 10 visits to different healthcare professionals before being diagnosed, delaying critical treatment.
For CD30 lymphoma testing, which is required to detect rarer forms of the condition, there are no routine testing procedures available. In addition, outpatient diagnostic procedures are usually paid for out of pocket, posing an additional financial barrier.
Utilizing its holistic approach, Takeda Healthcare Philippines, Inc. (“Takeda Philippines”) has been working closely with NGOs such as the Philippine Cancer Society and Pharmaceutical Healthcare Association of the Philippines to provide support and financial assistance for patients in need of CD30 testing. The company has also provided financial support to patients through the patient assistance program, allowing patients access to complete courses of prescribed medication.
“In the Philippines, we’ve channeled our efforts to providing holistic solutions to transform lymphoma care in partnership with the country’s healthcare system. We hope to bring the same patient-first, holistic and collaborative approach to broaden access to medicines for other rare diseases as well, so that we can help the country realize its goal of providing universal healthcare to Filipinos,” said Takeda Philippines country manager Loreann Villanueva.
Since 2017, over 300 Filipino patients have been able to access and complete their course of treatment for Hodgkin lymphoma through Takeda’s PAP, which have worked with 113 hospitals, 197 physicians, and enrolled 346 patients.