Lilly NCD Partners Gather in South Africa to Advance the Fight against NCDs

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Today's guest blog comes from Lilly's Vice President of Global Health Programs and Access, Dr. Evan Lee.

It is an exciting week for our NCD Partnership in South Africa as Lilly team members and partners are gathering for the Economist Group’s second annual conference on NCDs and Lilly’s first ever Partnership Summit in Johannesburg, July 16-19. The week will be off to a flying start with the New Approaches to Non-Communicable Diseases” conference on Tuesday, July 16. Hosted by The Economist Group and sponsored by Lilly, this meeting builds on our inaugural conference last year in Geneva, which focused on the dangerous rise of NCDs in developing countries.

The Economist Group has labeled NCDs a “chronic disease time bomb.” That’s not hyperbole. Four in every five NCD-related deaths today are in developing countries, putting an enormous strain on health care systems. We’re looking forward to participating in thought-provoking conversations about the role of innovative partnerships in driving solutions to NCDs. You can register to join us and the world-class speakers attending the sessions in Johannesburg in a live, online stream of the conference.

Following the Economist Group conference, Lilly partners will convene our first ever Partnership Summit. This event will bring together global thinkers and doers from each of our partner countries – South Africa, India, Mexico and Brazil – to share information on projects they’re spearheading to strengthen diabetes care.

These collaborations are a critical component of improving global health and access to better diagnosis and care for diabetes and related illnesses. Sharing research with partners in the public, private and non-profit sectors allows us to comprehensively evaluate progress, and assess where improvements can made. And our framework is uniquely designed to facilitate North-South and South-South interactions. This is important, as the lessons we are learning from our regional programs will inform cost-effective solutions to diabetes care that can be replicated and scaled up in developing countries around the world.

Taking the time to connect and learn empowers each of us to become better advocates for best practices and smarter policies. The summit, and a visit to one of our project sites in Johannesburg, will energize us and remind us about the promise of our work. The investments we are making to advance global health solutions will help patients live longer and better. They will also bring us one step closer to meeting the World Health Assembly’s target of reducing NCD-related mortality rates by 25 percent by 2025. We’re excited to catch up with our partners and look forward to a stimulating and productive week.