Stop TB Partnership

BD, FIND, Stop TB Partnership and UNDP collaborate to expand access to critical technology across 85 countries for improved TB diagnosis and drug susceptibility testing


Access to BD BACTEC™ MGIT™ technologies expanded to an additional 40 low- and middle-income countries

Cape Town, South Africa and Geneva, Switzerland - 24 March 2017 - BD (Becton, Dickinson and Company) (NYSE: BDX), FIND, the Stop TB Partnership and UNDP today announce an agreement to improve access to BD technology used to diagnose tuberculosis (TB) for 40 additional low- and middle-income countries, making a total of 85 countries that are eligible for access pricing.

BD BACTEC™ MGIT™ system technologies are used to diagnose TB and conduct drug susceptibility testing (DST) using liquid culture. Extending negotiated pricing for BD BACTEC MGIT technologies will enable millions of people to have better access to TB drug resistance testing and treatment monitoring, both of which are essential to the implementation of tailored, effective treatment regimes.

"Ten years ago, BD proactively worked with FIND to expand access to high TB burden countries that were not able to afford critical technologies," said Renuka Gadde, Vice President of Global Health for BD. "Today we are pleased to add an additional 40 low- and middle-income countries with high TB burden, as defined by WHO."

TB is the world’s deadliest infectious disease, killing an estimated 1.8 million people in 2015 and growing more threatening with the rapid rise of drug resistance. In 2015 there were an estimated 10.4 million people infected with active TB, of whom some 580,000 acquired drug-resistant strains.[1] To care for TB patients and safeguard the efficacy of existing medicines by reducing the spread of drug-resistant TB, clinicians need to know whether to use first- or second-line drugs, and in what combination, and they need to be able to monitor a patient’s response to therapy. This requires availability of affordable DST.

The gold standard method of diagnosing TB and conducting DST is via culture tests, which involve the growth of TB bacteria from patient samples.

"The WHO guidelines for the programmatic management of drug-resistant TB recommend monthly culture tests for patient monitoring,[2] and this effort reinforces BD’s commitment to the global fight against antimicrobial resistance," said Dave Hickey, President of Diagnostics Systems for BD. "BD BACTEC MGIT system technologies run automated liquid culture tests, which have a turnaround time of roughly two weeks - far faster than the standard two-month turnaround time for solid culture."

The changing map of TB drug resistance today indicates a bigger prevalence in most low- and middle-income countries (LMICs). Negotiations between BD, FIND, the Global Drug Facility (an initiative of the Stop TB Partnership) and UNDP’s Procurement Services Unit have resulted in providing access pricing to nearly all LMICs (refer to the new FIND price list). The 40 new countries that now have access pricing to BD BACTEC MGIT testing accounted for some 526,000 TB cases in 2015, including more than 22,500 multidrug-resistant TB (MDR-TB) cases.[3] Of these, Angola, Central African Republic, Chad, Republic of Congo, Guinea Bissau, Liberia, Papua New Guinea and Peru appear on WHO’s high-burden TB, HIV/TB and/or MDR-TB lists.

UNDP’s Procurement Services Unit expressed strong support for the outcome of the price negotiations. Dominic Grace, Director of the Office of Sourcing and Operations at UNDP, said, "UNDP welcomes the expansion of the negotiated pricing to countries in these challenging settings, allowing better access to TB diagnostics technologies. This is an important achievement and we look forward to further cooperation in this area."

Catharina Boehme, CEO of FIND said, "One of the most important aspects of our work is ensuring that essential diagnostic tests for TB, including BD BACTEC MGIT system technologies, are accessible to the people who need them most." Expanding negotiated pricing to include nearly all high-burden TB countries is an important step towards achieving that goal."

Dr Lucica Ditiu, Executive Director of the Stop TB Partnership said, "This is a great achievement and I am grateful for all of us partnering in such a constructive and transparent manner to ensure that more countries have access to these negotiated prices. Our team from the Stop TB Partnership Secretariat, especially GDF, are pushing even further to ensure increased access to diagnosis as the key intervention to end TB."

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About BD

BD is a global medical technology company that is advancing the world of health by improving medical discovery, diagnostics and the delivery of care. BD leads in patient and health care worker safety and the technologies that enable medical research and clinical laboratories. The company provides innovative solutions that help advance medical research and genomics, enhance the diagnosis of infectious disease and cancer, improve medication management, promote infection prevention, equip surgical and interventional procedures, and support the management of diabetes. The company partners with organizations around the world to address some of the most challenging global health issues. BD has more than 40,000 associates across 50 countries who work in close collaboration with customers and partners to help enhance outcomes, lower health care delivery costs, increase efficiencies, improve health care safety and expand access to health. For more information on BD, please visit www.http://bd.com.

About FIND

FIND, established in 2003 as a global nonprofit, is dedicated to accelerating the development, evaluation and use of high-quality, affordable diagnostic tests for poverty-related diseases, including tuberculosis, malaria, HIV/AIDS, sleeping sickness, hepatitis C, leishmaniasis, Chagas disease, Buruli ulcer, febrile illnesses and infectious diseases with outbreak potential, such as Ebola. Since 2003, FIND has partnered in the delivery of 20 new diagnostic tools, including 10 for tuberculosis, and has created an enabling environment for numerous others through the provision of specimen banks, reagent development and better market visibility.

FIND also supports better access to new diagnostics through price negotiations, implementation, quality assurance and lab strengthening work. FIND has over 200 partners globally, including research institutes and laboratories, health ministries and national disease control programmes, commercial partners, clinical trial sites, and bilateral and multilateral organizations, especially WHO. For more information, visit http://www.finddx.org.

About the Stop TB Partnership

The Stop TB Partnership is leading the way to a world without tuberculosis (TB), a disease that is curable but still kills three people every minute. Founded in 2001, the Partnership's mission is to serve every person who is vulnerable to TB and ensure that high-quality diagnosis, treatment and care are available to all who need it.

Together our 1500 partners are a collective force that is transforming the fight against TB in more than 100 countries. They include international and technical organizations, government programmes, research and funding agencies, foundations, NGOs, civil society and community groups and the private sector.

We operate through a secretariat hosted by UNOPS in Geneva, Switzerland and seven working groups whose role is to accelerate progress on access to TB diagnosis and treatment; research and development for new TB diagnostics, drugs and vaccines; and tackling drug resistant- and HIV-associated TB. The secretariat is governed by a Coordinating Board that sets strategic direction for the global fight against TB.

About the Global Drug Facility

The Global Drug Facility (GDF) is a one-stop, bundled procurement and supply mechanism for quality assured TB health products aimed at facilitating world-wide, equitable access to TB medicines and diagnostics across both public and private sectors. GDF combines strategic procurement and innovative logistics solutions, management and coordination of market activities for the full portfolio of TB medicines and diagnostics, technical assistance and capacity building for TB programmes in better pharmaceutical management practices, and accelerated uptake of new TB medicines, regimens, and diagnostics. Between 2001 and 2015, GDF has procured TB diagnostics worth US$131 million for more than 76 countries.

About UNDP

UNDP works in some 170 countries and territories, helping to achieve the eradication of poverty, and the reduction of inequalities and exclusion. We help countries to develop policies, leadership skills, partnering abilities and institutional capabilities, and build resilience in order to sustain development results.

Inclusive growth, better services, environmental sustainability, good governance and security are fundamental to development progress. We offer our expertise in development thinking and practice, and our decades of experience at country level, to support countries to meet their development aspirations and to bring the voices of the world’s peoples into deliberations.

In 2016, UNDP is continuing its work to support the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and the 17 new Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), or Global Goals, as they help shape global sustainable development for the next 15 years.

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[1] WHO. Global Tuberculosis Report 2016. Available at: http://www.who.int/tb/publications/global_report/en/

[2] WHO. Guidelines for the programmatic management of drug-resistant tuberculosis. 2011 update. Available at: http://apps.who.int/iris/bitstream/10665/44597/1/9789241501583_eng.pdf

[3] WHO. Global Tuberculosis Report 2016. Available at: http://www.who.int/tb/publications/global_report/en/