Olayinka Subair, Pfizer Nigeria’s Country Manager and Cluster Lead, West Africa, said this in a statement on Tuesday in Lagos.
Subair said Pfizer applies science and its global resources to bring therapies to patients in a way that extends and significantly improves their lives.
“Every day, Pfizer colleagues work across developed and emerging markets to advance wellness, prevention, treatments and cures that challenge the most feared diseases of our time.
“We collaborate with healthcare providers, governments, and local communities to support and expand access to reliable, affordable healthcare around the world.
“For more than 170 years, we have worked to make a difference for all who rely on us,” he said.
Subair said that Pfizer, guided by three pillars of innovation, investing and safeguarding, focuses on serving communities, broadening access to medicines and strengthening healthcare delivery for the people.
To close the patient affordability gap and increase patient access to much-needed oncology treatments, Subair said that Pfizer partnered with the American Cancer Society and the Clinton Health Access Initiative (CHAI).
He said the partnership was to boost market access for cancer treatments and to reduce the price of 16 priority and quality-assured medicines by almost 50 per cent in six African countries.
“Since the launch of the programme in 2019, several patients have accessed life-saving chemotherapy treatment,” he said.
Subair said Pfizer in collaboration with mPharma also introduced a payment programme ‘Project Taksit’ to address the challenges of healthcare financing and access.
“Project Taksit is providing patients with immediate access to their medication while enabling them to pay over 30 days.
“With the majority of the enrollees being patients paying out of pocket and insured patients whose plan is not covering the full length of hospital stay,” he said.
According to him, Pfizer also launched Project Afya, a patient assistance programme aimed at improving access to life-saving medications and boosting cancer care and autoimmune disease management.
“Project Afya is particularly significant for a country such as Nigeria where research shows that breast cancer accounts for 16.4 per cent of the cancer mortality rate.
“Followed by cervical cancer at 12 per cent, and prostate cancer at 11 per cent.
“Autoimmune diseases such as rheumatoid is a significant medical condition in Nigeria, affecting mostly women.
“Project Afya is aimed at alleviating some of the pressure on the country’s already overburdened healthcare system, where large numbers of people need greater access to specialised medicines,” he said.
He noted that addressing this healthcare gap would go a long way toward improving treatment outcomes.
According to him, universal healthcare coverage in Nigeria has faced serious setbacks with the majority of the populace paying out of pocket.
“The breakthrough therapies offered by Pfizer through Project Afya are aimed at extending and significantly improving the lives of people.
“The various patient assistance programmes are intended to help patients start, stay on and complete their treatments,” he said.
Subair noted that the programme formed part of Pfizer’s relentless drive to set the standard for quality, safety and value in the discovery, development and manufacture of healthcare products, including innovative medicines and vaccines.