Responding to global health challenges
Whenever there is a healthcare challenge, we stand ready to support our partners by keeping the pharmaceutical supply chain safe and continuously serving our customers and their patients. From managing spikes in demand to minimizing inequities in access to life-impacting treatments, we rely on our agile network and lean into our partnerships around the world to deliver on our purpose.
Everyday, we ship more than 6.7 million healthcare products to our tens of thousands of healthcare provider customers around the world, and this essential work to aid in the delivery of care never ceased throughout the pandemic.
Throughout FY22 we continued our work supporting the global response to the COVID-19 pandemic. In the United States, we served as the exclusive distributor of emergency use authorization treatments authorized by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS). Outside of the United States, we supported the distribution of vaccines and test kits internationally.
AmerisourceBergen has also served as a network administrator for the Federal Retail Pharmacy Program, ensuring our Good Neighbor Pharmacy independent pharmacy customers receive access to COVID-19 vaccines. To date, AmerisourceBergen has allocated more than 7 million vaccines to independent pharmacies participating in the Federal Retail Pharmacy Program across the country. In FY22, nearly 50% of our pharmacies participating in the Federal Retail Pharmacy Program are in areas with high to moderate social vulnerability, as defined by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).
In addition, the AmerisourceBergen Foundation continues to make a difference in COVID-19 response efforts through grant-making, including a grant made to Direct Relief, a non-profit organization that provides medical aid and supplies to resource-poor communities around the globe. Direct Relief's ongoing commitment to the pandemic includes increasing its cold-chain infrastructure to support temperature ranges necessary to protect medicines’ efficacy, including COVID-19 vaccines and other temperature-sensitive therapies.
Alliance Healthcare and Alloga in the UK were the proud recipients of the Special Recognition Award for Outstanding Response to COVID-19 at the Logistics UK Awards. The teams’ quick thinking and rapid action ensured the supply of medicines to the National Health Service (NHS) and UK patients.
Investing for the future
Leading beyond COVID-19
Since the pandemic, we have further evolved our capabilities and response measures to increase our agility and resiliency in the face of the next crisis. We are well positioned to tackle emerging healthcare challenges, in particular those that disproportionately affect vulnerable populations, due to our global distribution model and strong partnerships with international governments, manufacturers, and non-profits throughout local communities.
In FY22, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services awarded AmerisourceBergen a contract for the distribution of mpox vaccines across the United States. ICS, part of the AmerisourceBergen family of companies, is supporting the Strategic National Stockpile (SNS) to quickly deliver vaccines and treatments to communities with the greatest risk of infection. This partnership has allowed the SNS to increase the number of shipments and locations receiving the vaccines. The AmerisourceBergen Foundation partnered with one of our strategic emergency preparedness and disaster response partners, Healthcare Ready, a nonprofit organization that works to ensure patient access to equitable health care in times of disaster and disease outbreaks, in efforts to combat the spread of mpox and to ensure at-risk and historically underserved communities are appropriately prioritized.
In addition, World Courier Israel, in partnership with World Courier Denmark, worked with the Israeli Ministry of Health to quickly transport mpox vaccines to Israel for the treatment of patients with HIV, rare diseases, and those over the age of 50.
"Antibiotics are essential infrastructure for modern healthcare systems, but lives and livelihoods are at risk from the silent and insidious pandemic of AMR. AMR is a material risk to the global economy and our financial stability. Our solutions need to consider the whole supply chain, with sustainable antibiotic use as the social and economic norm. I commend the efforts of Alliance Healthcare to mitigate AMR, and through your ESG exemplify your corporate responsibility on the global AMR emergency."
Combating antimicrobial resistance
As a healthcare leader, we are continuously focused on what health challenges we may face next as a global population. The World Health Organization (WHO), U.S. Government, and European Commission have each initiated action plans to raise global awareness and tackle anti-microbial resistance (AMR), a significant global public health issue. According to the WHO, antimicrobials are medicines, including antibiotics, antivirals, antifungals, and anti-parasitics, used to prevent and treat infections in humans, animals and plants. AMR occurs when bacteria, viruses, fungi, and parasites evolve over time and no longer respond to medicines. This makes it harder to treat infections and increases the risk of disease spread, severe illness, and death.
AmerisourceBergen and Alliance Healthcare have committed support to this campaign by using commercial, philanthropic, and thought leadership channels — in conjunction with upstream and downstream partners — to respond to the threat of anti-microbial resistance by championing the safe and responsible use of anti-microbial treatments for human and animal health. This includes leading a call to action for full-service healthcare distributors in partnership with GIRP the European Healthcare Distribution Association, the umbrella organization for full-service healthcare distributors in Europe. The inaugural event, held in Brussels, Belgium in November 2022, convened policymakers and leaders across the healthcare and pharmaceutical industries to discuss AMR and explore multi-sector collaborative efforts to drive a global response. The event featured remarks from members of the European Parliament, European Commission and organizations spearheading AMR response efforts, in addition to panel discussions led by healthcare and pharmaceutical executives.
Patient education on responsible use of antimicrobials is key to combating AMR. Alliance Healthcare’s Alphega Pharmacy participated in World Antibiotic Awareness Week 2022 by launching a campaign to increase awareness about AMR and educate patients on the proper use of antimicrobials to mitigate the risk of resistance.