In the face of a global crisis, Novartis has quickly mobilized R&D capabilities, medicines, clinical trials expertise and philanthropic aid to address the coronavirus pandemic.
Access and pricing commitments
Novartis is making 15 drugs that treat key symptoms of COVID-19 available to low- and lower-middle income countries at zero profit until a vaccine or curative treatment is found. Sandoz, the Novartis generics and biosimilars division, is maintaining prices on a basket of essential medicines that may help in the treatment of COVID-19, and is partnering with US-based Civica Rx to support the stable supply of essential generic hospital medicines.
Novartis has committed to donating USD 40 million through our COVID-19 Response Fund to support communities around the world impacted by the pandemic. Additionally, Novartis and the Novartis US Foundation have established a US COVID-19 Community Response Fund that will provide cash and in-kind donations totaling USD 5 million for immediate response and recovery efforts related to the pandemic in the US.
We are assessing whether Novartis medicines could be effective in treating patients with COVID-19. We quickly established Phase III clinical trials for ruxolitinib, in collaboration with Incyte, and canakinumab to determine if they can help patients with certain COVID-19 related symptoms. We are also providing these and other medicines to investigator-initiated trials (IITs) and managed access programs upon request. There are in total over 15 Novartis medicines being studied in 35 IITs around the world.
Collaborating with partners
We are undertaking several efforts to leverage our capabilities in discovery, development and scale-up manufacturing. We are partnering with multi-stakeholder external consortia, including the COVID-19 Therapeutics Accelerator, coordinated by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, Wellcome, and Mastercard, as well as a COVID-19 directed partnership supported by the Innovative Medicines Initiative (IMI).
Supporting our associates
The safety and wellbeing of our associates is a priority for Novartis. We are taking steps to support associates and their families as they adapted to new conditions and commitments, such as remote work, educating children at home, or caring for loved ones. For associates in critical roles who need to be on site, we provide additional paid leave and childcare support. We announced an updated flexibility policy that empowers all office-based associates to choose how, where and when they work within their country of employment.
These materials contain forward-looking statements within the meaning of the United States Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. Forward-looking statements can generally be identified by words such as “to address,” “contribution,” “commitment,” “support,” “undertaking,” “eorts,” “maintaining,” “potential,” “plans,” “to sponsor,” “leading,” “partnering,” “supporting,” “looking,” “spearheading,” “can,” “will,” “may,” “could,” “accelerate,” “to leverage,” “assessing,” “builds on,” or similar terms, or by express or implied discussions regarding potential marketing approvals, new indications or labeling for the investigational or approved products described in these materials, or regarding discussions about Novartis internal, external and collaborative research and development eorts against COVID-19, assessments of whether our clinical-stage investigational or approved medicines could be repurposed beyond their intended or approved indications to treat complications of COVID-19, support of clinical trials for existing and investigational Novartis medicines, the Sandoz commitment to maintain prices on a basket of essential medicines that may help in the treatment of COVID-19, commitments to contribute and donate up to USD 40 million and up to 130 million doses of hydroxychloroquine to support the global COVID-19 pandemic response. You should not place undue reliance on these statements. Such forward-looking statements are based on our current beliefs and expectations regarding future events, and are subject to significant known and unknown risks and uncertainties. Should one or more of these risks or uncertainties materialize, or should underlying assumptions prove incorrect, actual results may vary materially from those set forth in the forward-looking statements. There can be no guarantee that the investigational or approved products described in these materials will be submitted or approved for sale or for any additional indications or labeling in any market, or at any particular time. Nor can there be any guarantee that the activities and eorts described in these materials will be achieved or succeed, in the expected time frame, or at all. In particular, our expectations regarding such products, activities and eorts could be aected by, among other things, the uncertainties inherent in research and development, including clinical trial results and additional analysis of existing clinical data; regulatory actions or delays or government regulation generally; global trends toward health care cost containment, including government, payor and general public pricing and reimbursement pressures and requirements for increased pricing transparency; our ability to obtain or maintain proprietary intellectual property protection; the particular prescribing preferences of physicians and patients; general political, economic and business conditions, including the eects of and eorts to mitigate pandemic diseases such as COVID-19; safety, quality, data integrity or manufacturing issues; potential or actual data security and data privacy breaches, or disruptions of our information technology systems, and other risks and factors referred to in Novartis AG’s current Form 20 F on file with the US Securities and Exchange Commission. Novartis is providing the information in these materials as of this date and does not undertake any obligation to update any forward-looking statements contained in these materials as a result of new information, future events or otherwise.