By Christie Bloomquist, Vice President,
Corporate Affairs, Government Affairs, North America
COVID-19 has placed an enormous strain on the healthcare system, and the urgent needs of people everywhere are evolving daily. As a science-led organization, we are leveraging our research and development capabilities and have joined forces with external stakeholders to accelerate prevention, diagnostic and treatment options. Equally important, AstraZeneca has quickly mobilized to provide direct support to address the immediate needs of patients and healthcare workers during this unprecedented time.
Today, I am proud to share that AstraZeneca has pledged financial commitments to seven leading patient advocacy groups and professional societies across our therapeutic areas to prioritize continuity of care and address the holistic needs of patients and their loved ones amidst the pandemic. These commitments to help those on the frontlines of the battle against COVID-19 are in addition to our longstanding annual support to key patient advocacy organizations and professional society partners.
Cardiovascular and metabolic diseases (CVMD)
Funding to Mended Hearts will address the absence of in-person support for patients who have suffered a heart attack. It will enable a virtual support program, provide patients in the hospital with iPads, and create a patient hotline. An additional donation to the Association of Black Cardiologists will enable a consumer education and advocacy campaign to improve awareness and understanding of COVID-19 in relation to cardiovascular disease, other chronic conditions like diabetes and kidney disease, health disparities and social inequities in underserved communities.
Support to the American Cancer Society (ACS) COVID Relief Fund will address immediate continuity of care needs for cancer patients and healthcare providers during the COVID-19 pandemic. ACS’ Hope Lodges will serve as convenient housing for frontline healthcare providers. The capacity of ACS’ National Cancer Information Center will be increased for patients; specialists will staff lines 24 hours per day to help patients navigate care. An additional donation to the American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO) will help launch COVID Impacts Cancer to provide the most current information and resources to clinicians, cancer care delivery teams, and patients.
Respiratory & Immunology
Contributions to the American Thoracic Society (ATS) and American College of CHEST Physicians (CHEST) will provide support to overwhelmed hospitals by identifying and recruiting ICU-trained physicians through a newly launched Clinician Match Network and enable rapid delivery of resources and education to the clinicians on the front lines. In addition, ATS and CHEST will educate people with existing lung conditions during this crisis and provide support for underserved communities in the form of education, supplies and financial grants.
AstraZeneca support to the American Kidney Fund’s Coronavirus Emergency Fund will go to directly helping low-income patients (post-transplant and currently on dialysis) with food and transportation costs, filling a much-needed gap during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Consistent with our values to put patients first, this support reinforces our commitment to the patient community and the healthcare workers that care for them. The COVID-19 pandemic has taken its toll on communities all over the world, and we recognize now more than ever the role that we play in being part of the solution.
About AstraZeneca’s COVID-19 Response Efforts in the US
AstraZeneca is contributing to COVID-19 efforts with clinical and technology expertise and providing philanthropic support to ensure patients receive the care they need. In addition to the initiatives outlined above, legacy support for our key non-profit partners has enabled the creation of COVID-19 resources and new virtual ways of working. AstraZeneca is also supporting the Centers for Disease Control Foundation and the humanitarian aid organization, Direct Relief, to expand US testing and data capabilities and deploy emergency staffing and protective equipment on the front lines at the state and local level. In addition to the corporate donations, AstraZeneca is matching all employee donations to this cause. Learn more about our response on the COVID-19 hub.