ASPIRE: Our Commitment To Address Health Inequities in Low- and Middle-Income Countries

May 28, 2024 10:00 AM ET
Doctor's shown in Africa consulting with a patient.

Originally published on Bristol Myers Squibb News & Perspectives

Globally, communities are struggling to support growing healthcare needs. This is especially true in regions with limited financial resources, collectively known as low- and middle-income countries (LMICs). Although LMIC populations have grown nearly four times faster than those of other nations, many LMICs are not able to facilitate consistent access to high-quality care and treatments.

This contributes to pervasive health inequities. In fact, the World Health Organization estimates more than three-quarters of global deaths due to non-communicable diseases - like cancer or heart disease - occur in LMICs. And the life expectancy of a person living in a low-income country is 18 years shorter than that of someone living in a high-income country.

The imbalance in healthcare access is just one of the systemic barriers faced by the world’s most vulnerable populations, where worse health outcomes and lack of economic opportunities keep individuals and entire communities from achieving their full potential.

At BMS, our vision to transform patients’ lives through science extends to all patients. That is why we have a long-standing commitment to promote health equity and help people in underserved communities access the care and medicines they need.

We built on this commitment with a 10-year strategy to help patients in LMICs live healthier lives, called ASPIRE, which stands for Accessibility, Sustainability, Patient-centric, Impact, Responsibility and Equity. ASPIRE will help us achieve our goal to reach more than 208,000 patients in LMICs by 2033. The effort reflects our unwavering focus on operating responsibly and sustainably.

BMS is leading the way for access to immuno-oncology therapies in LMICs by collaborating with the Access to Oncology Medicines (ATOM) Coalition. BMS joined the ATOM Coalition as a founding supporter at its launch in 2022. Working with the ATOM Coalition and their partners, BMS will make Opdivo™ (nivolumab) available via a safe, scalable and sustainable access model in select countries including Pakistan, Rwanda and Zambia while working to develop an integrated pathway that can expand access in multiple LMICs by 2026.

By investing in solutions that reduce quality-of-care gaps and strengthen health systems, BMS will help drive equitable access to innovative medicines to patients around the world, regardless of where patients live. Enabling timely access to innovative medicines in LMICs is part of BMS’ commitment to health equity globally and our Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG) strategy

To learn more, read our press release.

About Bristol Myers Squibb

Bristol Myers Squibb is a global biopharmaceutical company whose mission is to discover, develop and deliver innovative medicines that help patients prevail over serious diseases. As global citizens, we work sustainably and responsibly to create a positive impact in the communities where we live and work.