Program Profile
Last updated from Access Observatory: 09 Sept 2020

Access and Affordability Initiative

The Access and Affordability Initiative (AAI) is a global health collaboration between four pharmaceutical companies, Merck & Co., Inc., Kenilworth, NJ USA (MSD), Novartis, Pfizer and Sanofi, and the Gates Foundation. The Initiative examines the role of differential pricing and health system strengthening to help improve access to medicines for underserved populations, particularly low-income groups, in LMICs. The AAI pilot programs are exploring an innovative approach, which measures the ability of patients living with NCDs, specifically hypertension and diabetes, in the same country to access innovative medicines for these conditions when differential pricing is applied.

The AAI pilot programs in Ghana and the Philippines constitute the first multi-stakeholder, private sector effort to partner with governments with the explicit goal of validating intra-country differential pricing as a sustainable access tool. Approximately 3,000 people are enrolled in each study, which are unique in incorporating supplementary health system strengthening efforts. Studies included training of healthcare professionals in the treatment of hypertension and diabetes, including improvements in clinical management and patient monitoring, supply chain solutions to ensure medicines availability, differentially priced medicines for individuals determined to be lower income according to study criteria and the provision of clinically-appropriate patient care.

Consistent with anti-trust laws that govern industry interactions, each participating company independently and voluntarily develops its own marketing and pricing strategies reflecting, among other factors, the Company’s product portfolios and the patients it serves. Accordingly, each of the participating companies independently and unilaterally makes decisions involving the AAI.

The data for this program has been reviewed by both the companies and the Access Observatory team.