Millennium development goals
The Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) are eight international development goals that, in 2000, all 192 United Nations (UN) member states agreed to achieve by the year 2015.
According to the UN, if these goals are achieved, world poverty will be cut by half, tens of millions of lives will be saved, and billions more people will have the opportunity to benefit from the global economy.
The MDGs also provide a framework for the international community to make a contribution. The private sector can be powerful in social as well as economic development simply by doing business - creating jobs, transferring technology and knowledge, procuring goods and services, providing for their employees and by enhancing people’s quality of life through the products they bring to market.
The pharmaceutical industry is well placed to contribute to the MDGs. Several of the goals and targets are centred on improving health and halting the spread of disease. Additionally, the first goal of eradicating poverty and hunger is closely linked to health, as disease may lead to loss of job and livelihood, and thereby to poverty and hunger. Improving global health would help enable people to better cater for themselves and lead longer and more productive lives - contributing to economic as well as human development. Helping achievement of the MDGs also makes good business sense because progress would bring with it more commercially viable markets for us in the future.
We are committed to contributing to achievement of those goals where we can help to make a difference, working both within AstraZeneca and in collaboration with other organisations. This section provides a summary of our contribution. You can read more about the detail of our activities in other sections of this website by clicking on the links provided.
MDG 4 – Reduce child mortality rate and MDF 5 – Improve maternal health
In 2010 we launched the AstraZeneca Young Health Programme, a long term global programme to help disconnected adolescents understand and deal with the health issues they face, aiming to protect their health now and improving their chances for a better life in the future. Local programmes are being run around the world, and the first to launch are in Brazil, India, UK, Sweden and Canada. The programmes focus on the main health challenges faced by adolescents, including sexual and reproductive health and teenage pregnancy, and thereby supports the realisation of MDGs 4 and 5, as well as supporting MDG 6 in relation to HIV.
MDG 6 Combat HIV/AIDS, malaria and other diseases
TB is one of our main areas of focus relating to diseases of the developing world - both by committing resource to the research into an efficient treatment of the disease, and by working in partnerships in underserved communities with organisations such as the Red Cross to improve disease awareness and build local healthcare capabilities.
TB is the number one killer for people with HIV infection. We have a dedicated TB research facility in Bangalore, India. AZD5847, the most advanced of our potential new TB medicines entered Phase 2 clinical trials in 2012 and is backed up with a portfolio of other programmes in earlier stages. We will partner with relevant organisations to ensure a future TB treatment is widely available in the developed world.
No one company can tackle this alone and we also work with others to meet the challenge. For example, AstraZeneca and Medicines for Malaria Venture (MMV) are working together to identify novel candidate drugs for the treatment of malaria.
Our partnership with AMREF is delivering improved health care for HIV, TB and Malaria in two regions of Uganda and is demonstrating some of the benefits and efficiencies of tackling these three health priorities together.
MDG 8 – Develop a global partnership for development
We have developed a number of longstanding relationships with both NGOs and international organisations to better battle the lack of access to healthcare in developing countries. We see these partnerships as key to the success of our efforts and have defined criteria for these partnerships and programmes, including, for example, the ability to deliver measurable outcomes in under-served communities.