The challenge of antimicrobial resistance (AMR) is one of the world’s biggest public health emergencies. There is an alarming rise in the number of bacteria and microbes threatening to make diseases, that are currently easy to treat, virtually incurable.
As global health leaders gather this week at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Johnson & Johnson is proud to be recognized as a leader among its peers in the 2nd AMR Benchmark report, independently compiled by the Access to Medicines Foundation.
Johnson & Johnson has been recognized for our performance in four core Benchmark categories of Research & Development (R&D), Responsible Manufacturing, Appropriate Access, and Stewardship. Johnson & Johnson is making the second largest R&D investment in relevant disease areas as identified by the Benchmark, and is stewarding one of the largest antimicrobial pipelines, including pediatric formulations of SIRTURO® (bedaquiline) and vaccines to ensure antimicrobials remain a backbone of modern medicine.
These efforts are exemplified in our work to tackle drug resistant tuberculosis (DR-TB). DR-TB is responsible for one-third of all AMR-related deaths and is the world’s only airborne drug-resistant infection. Currently, a third of all people with DR-TB are not aware they are infected, posing a major threat to public health and global health security.
We have a longstanding commitment to develop and responsibly deploy innovative technologies and treatments to combat the growing threat of AMR on multiple fronts. However, if we are ever to fully scale up and accelerate these efforts, we need greater investments in basic science and novel incentive models so that industry can truly mobilize its R&D expertise to develop new antibiotics. And to protect our existing treatments, we need to explore new frameworks for appropriate use.
Our efforts to combat TB:
- In 2012, Johnson & Johnson introduced SIRTURO® (bedaquiline), the first new TB medicine with a novel mechanism of action in more than 40 years.
- Since then, Johnson & Johnson has delivered more than 184,000 courses of bedaquiline to 138 countries – including 105,000 courses free of charge through a four-year donation program.
- More broadly, and importantly, we are focused on efforts to strengthen health systems capacity in high-burden countries by training health workers, improving diagnostic capacity, raising awareness about TB at the community level, and supporting efforts to ensure the appropriate use of our medicine.
- In September 2018, Johnson & Johnson announced a 10-year commitment to DR-TB – with a focus on working with partners to expand responsible access to bedaquiline, improve diagnostic capacity to identify the “missing millions” of TB patients, and advance R&D to develop the TB medicines of the future.
AMR Benchmark + AMR Industry Alliance
- Progress reports like the 2nd AMR Benchmark and an analysis from the AMR Industry Alliance published last week are important as we work together across civil society, governments, donors and industry to improve the level of coordination, knowledge management and accountability on the world’s TB response.