29 September 2022, Osaka, Japan, and Geneva, Switzerland – As part of their well-established partnership, the United Nations Institute for Training and Research (UNITAR) and Takeda (TSE:4502/NYSE:TAK), a global pharmaceutical leader and an active member of the United Nations Global Compact, are pleased to announce a new joint initiative focused on strengthening countries’ healthcare systems to meet patients’ need for plasma and plasma-derived therapies. The initiative will draw on UNITAR’s expertise in training and education toward the development of innovative solutions to global challenges and Takeda’s deep knowledge of rare disease and the plasma ecosystem.
Global demand for plasma has greatly increased over the past 20 years and is continuing to grow due to increasing numbers of patients with rare diseases being diagnosed, as well as higher standards of care and broader access to treatment globally. This demand for life-changing and life-sustaining plasma-derived therapies far exceeds available supply, resulting in more people around the world struggling to access the treatments they need, especially in low- and middle-income countries.
The overall goal of this initiative is to create a neutral, UN-based platform that will bring together experts, policymakers, patient organizations, academia, civil society and the private sector. Through increasing awareness, building partnerships and facilitating access to the latest scientific knowledge and best practices, this platform aims to support countries in finding their own tailored solutions on how to improve the quality of life and life expectancy of patients who rely on plasma-derived therapies. The project will also focus on complementing and finding synergies with other existing initiatives to improve plasma ecosystems and increase patient access to care.
The importance of plasma-derived therapies is affirmed by their inclusion in the WHO Model List of Essential Medicines, emphasizing their significance for the healthcare system and the need to facilitate access to these products in all countries. Similarly, an increasing number of countries acknowledges the need for – and interest in – strengthening the resilience of their healthcare systems in the field of plasma supply. Pending official confirmation, the pilot phase of the current initiative will be implemented in collaboration with two countries, whose forward-thinking participation in this program to bolster their countries’ health infrastructure around plasma and the patient's plasma-derived therapies can help will serve as a pathfinder for potential expansion of the project in the future.
UNITAR will serve as a coordinator of the project, hosting the platform as a collaborative framework for stakeholders to meet, lead informed discussion and lay the groundwork for future collaboration.
Availability of lifesaving and life-sustaining plasma-derived therapies can be a matter of life or death. As part of our mandate within the United Nations System, we will work hand-in-hand with Takeda to build capacity, increase awareness, enhance partnerships and facilitate access to the latest scientific knowledge and best practices in this field,
said Nikhil Seth, United Nations Assistant Secretary-General and Executive Director of UNITAR.
I am glad to see the partnership between UNITAR and Takeda growing. It can serve as a powerful example of how public-private partnerships can contribute to the goals of the Agenda 2030, and address some of the urgent global challenges, such as ensuring access to health, reducing inequalities, or improving the quality of technical education.
As a founding sponsor, Takeda will serve as one of the knowledge partners providing plasma expertise, funding and project support.
We are thrilled to extend Takeda’s established partnership with UNITAR through this new joint initiative to help address the challenges of global plasma supply and provide more plasma-derived therapies to patients who need them.
said Giles Platford, President of Takeda’s Plasma-Derived Therapies Business Unit.
Takeda is a global, values-based, R&D-driven biopharmaceutical leader headquartered in Japan, committed to discover and deliver life-transforming treatments, guided by our commitment to patients, our people and the planet. Takeda focuses its R&D efforts on four therapeutic areas: Oncology, Rare Genetics and Hematology, Neuroscience, and Gastroenterology (GI). We also make targeted R&D investments in Plasma-Derived Therapies and Vaccines. We are focusing on developing highly innovative medicines that contribute to making a difference in people’s lives by advancing the frontier of new treatment options and leveraging our enhanced collaborative R&D engine and capabilities to create a robust, modality-diverse pipeline. Our employees are committed to improving quality of life for patients and to working with our partners in health care in approximately 80 countries and regions. For more information, visit https://www.takeda.com.